Champions League Group A wrap: PSG score emphatic win
By Football News
PSG stormed to victory on Tuesday night in their opening group game of the Champions League.
All the damage was done in the first half by the home side, who threw down a warning to Europe's biggest sides with the emphatic win.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic converted a penalty to break the deadlock before debutant defender Thiago Silva made his mark by shooting home from a corner.
Alex made it 3-0 shortly afterwards from a similar scenario, allowing the hosts to play the second period at walking pace. Miguel Veloso belatedly pulled one back for the guests, but Javier Pastore grabbed a fourth for the hosts in stoppage time.
From the outset Carlo Ancelotti's side looked enterprising and dangerous, threatening as early as the second minute when Jeremy Menez released Javier Pastore to flick a shot against visiting goalkeeper Maksym Koval.
Although PSG’s early storm seemed to have been weathered, Menez's trickery in the box induced a rash challenge from Taras Mykhalyk, who caught the attacker's foot, sending him to the turf. Ibrahimovic was able to step up and create history, slotting his penalty down the middle to become the first player to score for six teams in the Champions League.
Thereafter, the home side simply swept their opponents away, and only heroics from Koval prevented Ibrahimovic completing a hat-trick before the interval. The Swede got in behind the visiting rearguard simply from a terrific pass from the outstanding Marco Verratti, but the goalkeeper positioned himself well to block, and then repelled the follow up from Pastore.
The teenager could not stop his side slumping to a three-goal half-time deficit, let down by a defence that failed to police PSG adequately from corner kicks.
Silva was the first to benefit, showing admirable composure on his debut to control a loose ball in the box and then slide a shot in off the post.
Alex struck the third shortly afterwards, hammering the ball into the net with a fine volley, although the ball should never have reached him on the penalty spot.
The second half was simply a procession for the hosts, who slowed the tempo of their play noticeably.
With a handful of minutes remaining, Veloso's tremendous cross deceived everyone and flew into Salvatore Sirigu's net, but the shine by Pastore in stoppage time as he squeezed home a low shot.
Meanwhile, a goal in each half saw Porto notch a 2-0 win at Croatian outfit Dinamo Zagreb.
In front of a paltry crowd of less than 5,000 fans, Porto captain Lucho Gonzalez opened the scoring after 41 minutes.
And although they had to wait until stoppage time of the second half to seal their victory, Belgian midfielder Steven Defour's late effort ensured Vitor Pereira's men would head back to Portugal with all three points.