Borussia Dortmund v Paris St-Germain
Tuesday February 18, 20:00
Dortmund eye-catching effort
Borussia Dortmund bounced back from a defensive horror show against Leverkusen to deliver an emphatic performance against Eintracht Frankfurt on Friday night. Lucien Favre‘s charges kept their unbeaten home record intact as they trounced their guests 4-0 at Signal Iduna Park with wonderkids Jadon Sancho and Erling Braut Haaland again grabbing goals.
Defender Lukasz Piszczek and wing-back Raphael Guerreiro were also on the scoresheet for Die Schwarzgelben, Emre Can impressed co-ordinating Dortmund’s press on debut in front of the Yellow Wall, and goalkeeper Roman Burki wasn’t once tested as BVB produced a much-improved defensive display, from front to back, to secure a welcome clean sheet.
Post-match, Mats Hummels said, “If we repeat this performance against PSG, we’ll have a great chance”. However, the hosts will be without captain Marco Reus, Thomas Delaney and Julian Brandt. Can will therefore continue in midfield with Thorgan Hazard joining Sancho and Haaland in an exciting three-man attack. Manuel Akanji could replace Piszczek at the back.
PSG stutter in remarkable Amiens encounter
Runaway Ligue 1 leaders PSG drew 4-4 with relegation-threatened Amiens in a remarkable match on Saturday afternoon, coming from 3-0 down to lead before conceding a very late leveller. Trailing by three goals in a first-half demolition, Ander Herrera gave Les Parisiens hope before the break and Thomas Tuchel made two vital changes at the interval.
The introductions of Marco Verratti and Marquinhos in place of Idrissa Gueye and out-of-sorts Thiago Silva appeared to restore order as 17-year-old defender Tanguy Kouassi scored two headers from corners, and Mauro Icardi tapped home to make it 4-3 to the defending champions. But in injury time, Amiens rescued a sensational draw against the odds.
Kylian Mbappe and Neymar were left out of PSG’s squad for Saturday’s showdown, whilst Herrera filled in as a makeshift right-back, and head coach Thomas Tuchel suggested there was little to worry about in preparation for Dortmund, saying, “Why would I be worried? Do you think it’ll be the same game in Dortmund? I’m not worried. I trust my players”.
Borussia Dortmund and Paris St-Germain have only locked horns twice before, back in the 2010/11 Europa League group stages with both encounters ending all-square, the last of which was a goalless game at the Parc des Princes. Łukasz Piszczek, Mats Hummels and Mario Gotze are the only survivors from that stalemate in Paris and a repeat looks unlikely.
Dortmund [3.00 ]overcame Inter (3-2) and draw with Barcelona (0-0) here during the group-stage, as well as beating Slavia Prague (2-1). Nevertheless, Die Schwarzgelben have been beaten in four of their past six Champions League knockout ties here (W2-D0-L4) and surprisingly qualified for the Last 16 stage having scored the fewest group-stage goals (8).
PSG [2.40] reached the knockout stages for the eighth consecutive season with two games to spare – Thomas Tuchel’s troops took top honours in five of their six group games, only dropping points in a 2-2 draw away at Real Madrid. Les Parisiens progressed with the competition’s best defence record after shipping just two goals in the group-stage.
It’s difficult to dismiss the potential for goals in North Rhine-Westphalia on Tuesday night. Dortmund became the first ever side to score five goals in three consecutive Bundesliga games at the beginning of 2020, and after annihilating Frankfurt, BVB have struck an unprecedented 63 league goals, the joint-highest at this stage of a season in Germany.
PSG have shipped seven goals in their last three Ligue 1 outings, although the capital cub will be expected to make their mark here having notched in each of their past 30 Champions League encounters. The French champions have fired a solitary blank across all competitions since May 2018 and 25 of PSG’s past 30 in this competition have produced Over 2.5 Goals.
With star-studded frontlines, alongside questionable defences, it makes sense to focus our attention on the goals markets. The odds-against offering of [2.12] on Over 3.5 Goals looks to be the most attractive angle of attack from the Signal Iduna Park showdown.