Key Battles And Advantages For Paris Saint-Germain Against Barcelona


Paris Saint-Germain found out on Friday that their Champions League destiny will see Barcelona in their way to semi-finals. The two sides will now meet for the third time in the last three years, where both sides have found exceptional success against the other.

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In the quarter finals in 2013 under the leadership of Carlos Ancelotti, Paris were knocked out by Barcelona on away goals. The following campaign, a wounded capital club was down several players, most notably Zlatan Ibrahimovic but still managed to shock Barcelona in the group stage.

Now the two will meet in another situation involving the fact that only one club can go through. After a diligent investment into Paris Saint-Germain, the Qatari sports owned club have a clear case to beat the Catalans.

Seeing as Laurent Blanc’s men gave cemented their place in the European monarchy after shutting Chelsea down in the Round of 16, PSG are expected to move past the quarter-finals where they have been cut from in their last two attempts.

Now against Barcelona, Laurent Blanc will look to define his place at the club – here are the coaches biggest challenges and advantages going into this match up.

Lionel Messi

This one is obvious. Lionel Messi’s resurgence in the turn of 2015 has been astounding. His stunning display against Manchester City to his ten goals so far since the new year is only a tidbit of his pivotal mark this year.

Messi has always been Barcelona’s most dangerous player, but will be a handful for the Paris defence. Luckily Les Parisians have a very stable back line to reinforce themselves against Messi, as well as some help from their talented midfield.

But Messi will not be doing all the dirty work alone. Unlike Paris, the Catalans have a threesome formulating some of the best attacking football in Europe and with their dynamic chemistry they are on the cusp of becoming the club’s all time best frontline.

Security of the wings and iron defence tactics will be how Thiago Silva will have to captain his back four. It is nightmarish matchup, but the Brazilian can handle the heat.

Barcelona defense shaky

On the other hand, Blanc’s men can take pure advantage of Luis Enrique’s rusty back line. Both clubs behold very affirmative attacks, but where Paris are more influential is in their defensive duties.

Barcelona’s central defence have been under enormous scrutiny this season and should hope to find their best performance against the unforgiving Parisians.

Otherwise they might regret it in the name of Edinson Cavani or Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

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Zlatan out for one match

This bittersweet anomaly can be both an advantage and disadvantage. The advantage for Paris comes in the form of a less reliant squad.

On countless occasions Blanc’s men have proven more confidence and overall team dynamic without their intimidating leader. But where Zlatan comes in is his unique way of inserting magic into a match.

Considering the fact that Paris remain unbeaten at the Parc des Princes and the talisman will miss their first leg in France; the club will likely benefit. But at the Nou Camp, Zlatan’s return from his ban will add flare to the Paris attack – in the name of revenge.

Zlatan has always and will always have a chip on his shoulder from his days at Barcelona. Despite creating everlasting relationships such as the one with Theirry Henry, the Swede is still an enemy of that state.

His playing style accentuates under this attitude and we often see the best of the talisman when he is in his most ferocious form.


As noted previously, Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona’s next meeting will be their third in three years, meaning each clubs knowledge of one another will be quite fresh.

And what makes this match up even more so worth while for Les Parisians is their 3-2 battle with the Catalans earlier this year, reminding Blanc and his men of what they are capable of.