Di Maria birthday double helps PSG thump Barca
Angel Di Maria was in scintillating form as Paris Saint-Germain's picked up a famous 4-0 win over Barcelona.
JOHANNESBURG - Angel Di Maria was in scintillating form as Paris Saint-Germain's picked up a famous 4-0 win over Barcelona. The former Real Madrid star, who will be very aware of the ability of his Barca opponents, scored twice on his birthday to help his club put one foot in the Champions League quarter-finals.
The Argentine winger scored in each half as Julian Draxler and Edinson Cavani added salt to the Catalan wounds. PSG will take comfort from the result, especially after being knocked out by Barcelona in the quarter-finals back in 2013 and 2015. The last time Barca were eliminated at this stage was back in 2006/2007 when they crashed out at the hands of Liverpool.
No team has ever overturned a deficit of four or more goals to progress to the competition’s knockout stages.
Over in Portugal, Benfica made the most of an out of sorts Borussia Dortmund side as they picked up a tight 1-0 first leg win thanks to Kostas Mitroglou's strike, his 13th in his last 13 games. Defensively, Benfica remain unbeaten for the last 383 minutes of games, although that should’ve changed after the referee awarded the visitors a penalty but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang failed to convert.
Tonight Bayern Munich host Arsenal. The Bavarians have knocked Arsenal out at this stage of the Champions League three times since 2005 so the Gunners will have a point to prove at the Allianz Arena.
Over in Spain, reigning champions Real Madrid host Napoli at the Santiago Bernabeu. Napoli are unbeaten in their last 18 matches and will feel that an upset is on the cards.
Zinedine Zidane has resisted the temptation to select Gareth Bale for the clash who has finally recovered from an ankle injury back in November.
Both matches kick off at 21:45.