Chelsea beats PSG to reach Champions League semifinals
After losing 3-1 in the French capital, Andre Schuerrle began Chelsea’s comeback in the second leg with a first-half goal
Chelsea overturned a two-goal deficit against Paris Saint-Germain to reach the Champions League semifinals on Tuesday, with Paris-born striker Demba Ba clinching a 2-0 win that sent the London club through on away goals with a 3-3 draw.
After losing 3-1 in the French capital, Andre Schuerrle began Chelsea’s comeback in the second leg with a first-half goal. However, it took substitute Ba to stun his hometown club and grab the scruffy but crucial goal in the 87th minute.
Having been frustrated with the performances of his strikers all season, one of them delivered for Jose Mourinho when it mattered most.
The Chelsea manager was elated, flamboyantly sprinting from the bench to join his celebrating players, who collapsed in a heap on the pitch. It came a decade after Mourinho’s memorable dash down the Old Trafford touchline in a game against Manchester United during his Porto side’s successful run to the Champions League title.
Now Mourinho, having failed to bring the European Cup to Chelsea during his 2004-07 stint in charge, remains on course to win the competition in his first season back at Stamford Bridge.
In the night’s other match, Real Madrid lost 2-0 at last season’s finalist Borussia Dortmund - but advanced 3-2 on aggregate.
For PSG it’s another season of heartbreak in the quarterfinals - a victim of the away-goals rule just as against Barcelona last year.
“That’s what big games are about, it doesn’t come down to much,” PSG midfielder Blaise Matuidi said. “We were up against a big team. We had the chance to score and we didn’t, so we paid the price for it. It’s all down to the details.
“We’re really disappointed tonight. We’d done the hard work in the first leg by getting a two-goal lead.”
Although PSG’s wait to reach the Champions League semifinals again will go into a 20th year, the team, bankrolled for three years by Qatar, is on the verge of wrapping up its French title defense, holding a 13-point lead.
It’s far tighter for Chelsea in the Premier League, with Liverpool two points ahead with five games left.
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