Real Madrid vs PSG

Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are set to trade tackles in the return leg of their mouth-watering Champions League last-16 tie at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

A late moment of inspiration from Real Madrid-linked Kylian Mbappe handed Paris a 1-0 lead heading into the second leg. However, ‘Los Blancos’ have since gone from strength to strength in La Liga, racking up a three-game winning streak by an aggregate score of 8-1. Curiously, the runaway La Liga leaders had found the net in 23 consecutive Champions League round-of-16 fixtures before being held goalless in France last time out. Moreover, the first-leg reverse marked Madrid’s second defeat in their previous 14 European meetings with French opposition (W8, D4), while Mbappe’s strike was the sixth goal they’ve conceded across their last three such contests. Yet, ‘Los Merengues’ boast an intimidating overall home record against French visitors in European competition (W11, D4, L1).

Meanwhile, PSG go into this encounter on the back of a dismal 1-0 Ligue 1 defeat away to Nice, their second successive loss on hostile turf. Despite boasting a star-studded squad, manager Mauricio Pochettino has seen Paris go winless in their last four Champions League away matches (D2, L2). That’s not what the travelling fans would want to hear, especially considering ‘Les Parisiens’ had suffered three consecutive knock-out defeats away to Spanish clubs before dismantling Barcelona 4-1 in last season’s round of 16. On the bright side, PSG have progressed from 12 of 17 European two-legged knock-out ties after winning the first leg at home. The Ligue 1 heavyweights also hold a positive all-time knock-out record against Spanish sides (W6, L4), with the abovementioned win over Barcelona ending a run of four straight defeats.

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