The much-awaited ties brought desperation and anticipation among football fans across the globe. Little did they expect the results that awaited them.
The first leg of Round of 16 between Real Madrid and PSG turned out to be full of surprises as the game play did not reflect in the results. As they say: “The play does not guarantee the game”. This is an attestation to the fact that Los Blancos dominance in Europe will always remain despite a poor run of form in their domestic league. PSG on the other hand, is a just a team that is passing the building stage in hope for a brighter future. The stage being set was supposed to accommodate class and mastery in the game. All eyes were on Neymar and Mbappe to pile more misery on Zinedine Zidane. The Brazilian was in his world and lost focus and purpose in line of getting his job done. The defending champions equalizer in that match was the driving force behind them winning, coupled with Ronaldo’s class. Madrid won 3-1 to the delight of fans. The second leg proved that PSG beautiful flow of football was incomplete without Neymar. The tie lacked the necessary flow and Madrid got the upper hand 2 goals to 1 in their favour, a clapback to the pundits that ruled out their qualification.
Tottenham who has an impressive run in the EPL put them on the edge of qualification after drawing 2-2. A scoreline which went in their favour, thanks to 2 goals away from home. The determination to qualify over Juventus was evident as they wasted no time in grabbing the lead through Son’s goal in the first half. Juventus passion to qualify showed in Chiellini and Buffon’s doggedness down the pitch, orchestrating and making sure they do not concede more. The hardwork paid off when Higuain equalized after a great build-up from the flanks. Dybala will then round up the comeback with a beautiful 1-on-1 finish. Juventus have been looking to be crowned winners in recent seasons but luck has been shy of their path. Only time will tell because Chiellini and Buffon are past their primes and the age is creeping in on the duo, already.
This article was written by Alex Ndace; he tweets via @AlexNdace