Luis Suarez twice nutmegged David Luiz on the way to scoring a brilliant second-half double as Barcelona all but ended Paris Saint-Germain’s Champions League dream with a 3-1 quarter-final, first leg win at the Parc des Princes.
The visitors’ all-star attack made their class count as Neymar coolly converted from a Lionel Messi assist in the 18th minute to put Luis Enrique’s men in control, before Suarez produced two classy finishes in the final quarter of the game. PSG got one back eight minutes from time thanks to a deflected Gregory van der Wiel strike, but this was their first home defeat of the season and a first loss at home in Europe in 34 matches since 2006.
Any hope that PSG had of getting back in the game after Neymar’s goal ended minutes later when captain Thiago Silva hobbled off with an apparent thigh problem. A dejected Silva walked straight off the field to have his left thigh bandaged up, not even waiting until his fellow-Brazilian David Luiz was ready to take his place.
That Luiz was even an option off the bench for Laurent Blanc was a surprise as the former Chelsea defender was supposed to be out for a month with a hamstring injury. But after traveling to Russia to undergo treatment on his hammy, Luiz apparently made a miraculous recovery. He might have been technically fit, but Luiz was in no condition to face the trio of Messi, Neymar and Suarez by himself, and twice in the second half the former Liverpool striker nutmegged Luiz on his to goal.
PSG will have talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic and midfield maestro Marco Verratti back for the second leg, but if they have to go into the Camp Nou with Luiz at center-half then I cannot see anyway that they can beat Barcelona.