Champions League preview: Real Madrid vs Paris Saint-Germain

Real Madrid are at the Bernabeu for Wednesday’s Champions League round of 16 showdown against Paris Saint-Germain. Los Blancos have the chance to win the elite competition for the third season on the bounce but they need to first fend off the challenge from Les Parisiens, who are cruising in the French Ligue 1.

League form:

Zinedine Zidane’s have looked far off from defending their league title this campaign and they are currently 17 points adrift of league leaders Barcelona, who are favourites to reclaim the crown. On the contrary, Les Parisiens are enjoying a 12-point advantage over AS Monaco at the top of the standings and they are in a strong position to reclaim their Ligue 1 title from the Principality outfit.

Players to watch for:

Cristiano Ronaldo – Real Madrid: The Portugal international has improved on his goalscoring form as the season has progressed. The Euro 2016 winner has netted seven times in his previous five appearances and Les Parisiens will be tasked with restricting his movement into the box. Unlike in his early years, Ronaldo has lost a bit of pace but his strong positioning often sees him within the cusp of scoring a goal.  Ronaldo has failed to score in his last two appearances against Paris Saint-Germain.

Neymar – Paris Saint-Germain: Similarly to Ronaldo, Neymar is unquestionably the biggest player in the opposition ranks. The Brazilian has made a strong start to his career with Les Parisiens and his link-up play with Edinson Cavani could be key to unlocking Los Blancos’ backline. Neymar has a strong record against Los Blancos with three goals and five assists in just eight appearances. Neymar saw his recent winner against Toulouse chalked off as an own-goal but he has still netted seven times in his last five outings.

Prediction:

Real Madrid 2-1 Paris Saint-Germain

Image – Getty