Crucial 2nd leg clash for Real Madrid and PSG

Neymar Jr against Marseille
PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 25: (L-R) Neymar Jr of Paris Saint Germain, Hiroki Sakai of Olympique Marseille, Florian Thauvin of Olympique Marseille during the French League 1 match between Paris Saint Germain v Olympique Marseille at the Parc des Princes on February 25, 2018 in Paris France (Photo by Jeroen Meuwsen/Soccrates/Getty Images)

The crucial second leg clash between Real Madrid and PSG will take place next Tuesday, with both teams marred by injuries. The imminent second leg clash between two of the hottest teams in the Champions League promises to be exciting. PSG spent a whopping 222 million euros to acquire Brazilian star Neymar Jr in their quest to win this year’s UCL.

Injury Woes

Neymar Jr

In their much anticipated game against Marseille, the PSG ‘saviour’ suffered an ankle injury similar to the one sustained in the 2014 World Cup. Neymar Jr’s surgery was successful, but he will be out of action for at least 3 months.

No go for Marquinhos

Marquinhos is also suffering a thigh injury, picked up in the second half of the Marseille game. Mbappe may also be unavailable for the second leg.

Mbappe was another of Paris’ acquisitions for their championship challenge. He was stretchered off, again against Marseille.

Real Madrid are also having injury issues. Marcelo picked up a knock in the game against Real Betis. He has trained, and featured in their game this weekend. Toni Kroos and Luka Modric are also ruled out. Therefore Tuesday’s tie will see an even field.

Replacements

Kovacic, Lucas Vasquez and Nacho are the most likely replacements for Madrid. Similarly PSG can turn to DiMaria, Kimpembe and Draxler for their replacements.

First Leg

Real Madrid did not disappoint their fans. A scintillating performance against the Parisians captured a 3-1 home win, despite their La Liga failures.

PSG played well, but fans were shocked and dejected when skipper Thiago Silva was benched alongside in-form Dimaria. El Matador was pulled from the game, thus giving Real Madrid a free reign over their opponents.

The Game

The second leg at home for Paris was much anticipated. Fans will recall that PSG had defeated Barcelona in their round of sixteen first leg last season. It was Neymar Jr. who gave Barcelona the ammunition to fire a second leg comeback.

Paris fans were hoping for a similar outcome. They were praying Neymar Jr. would use his magic feet once again to level the score.

In his absence, his replacement will need the entire team’s back-up to defeat the mighty Real Madrid. Anything is possible. The attacking of PSG is formidable. The Madrid defense has been lacking lately, Paris will be looking to capitalise on this.

Silva-back?

Hopefully this time around, Silva will be at the back for PSG to stop Christiano Ronaldo. He always ups his game for the Champion’s League, and is also a beast upfront with those powerful headers.

Despite all other injuries, it is likely that the BBC trio will start for Zinedine Zidane. However, if they hope to defeat Paris at home, Isco will be more effective to use. With Gareth Bale back in form, you cannot count Real Madrid out of this game.

 The Line-Up?

PSG can also be a formidable force if the correct formation is played. It would be wise for them to utilise their second best line up if they want to win.

Starting with a back four of Thiago Silva, Dani Alves, Kimpembe and Kurzawa is best. Veratti, Motta and Lo Celso will adopt a midfield role. Cavani, Dimaria and Draxler could be most effective upfront.

So, Nacho?

Madrid would want to use Ramos, Nacho, Varane and Carvajal to start their backline. Kovacic, Vasquez, Isco and Casemiro could complete the midfield. Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale would play perfectly at the top.

Despite both teams having injured players, the game will still be the one to watch. Madrid will not want to make the trip to lose. PSG have invested the most money in the UCL, thus would be embarrassed to crash out at home. If they should lose, Unai Emry would likely be forced to go job hunting.

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