5 Great Goals from PSG vs. Chelsea Encounters
Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea have grown extremely familiar with each other over the past few seasons in the UEFA Champions League.
The two European heavyweights will be reunited for the third consecutive campaign at Parc des Princes on Tuesday in the first leg of their round-of-16 bout.
The Blues have enjoyed the better of their recent meetings, winning 3-0 in Paris back in 2004 and 2-0 at Stamford Bridge in 2014, but PSG knocked out the 2012 champions last year.
Over the years, the PSG-Chelsea fixture has produced some superb goals, and the upcoming instalment of this burgeoning rivalry promises even more.
Here is a collection of five great goals scored in games between the French and English giants.
5. David Luiz vs. Chelsea: Stamford Bridge, 2015
With time running out to find an equaliser to force extra time and possibly penalties at Stamford Bridge, the 10 men of PSG won a corner with just four minutes of normal time remaining.
Gary Cahill had put Jose Mourinho’s men 1-0 up on the night and 2-1 ahead on aggregate just five minutes earlier, so Les Parisiens were staring down the barrel at elimination from the Champions League earlier than anticipated.
Step forward, David Luiz. The Brazil international had joined PSG from Chelsea only the summer before, and plenty had been made of the player’s extravagant £37.13 million transfer fee before the two matches.
The 28-year-old lived up to that massive price tag by powerfully heading in a priceless late equaliser for Laurent Blanc’s men, forcing Chelsea into extra time.
The French champions went on to draw the game 2-2 thanks to a towering header from captain Thiago Silva—a strong contender to replace Luiz on this list because of its importance.
PSG knocked the Blues out 3-3 over the two legs on the away-goals tiebreaker and advanced to the quarter-finals for the third straight season, while the Ligue 1 champions were left vindicated in their signing of Luiz thanks to such an important goal.
4. Didier Drogba vs. PSG: Parc Des Princes, 2004
Playing in France for the first time since moving from Olympique de Marseille—PSG’s bitter rivals—to Chelsea earlier that summer, Didier Drogba put on a show in front of supporters who had despised him as an OM player just months before.
The Ivory Coast international scored twice as Jose Mourinho’s men eased to a 3-0 win at Parc des Princes against an average Parisien side under Vahid Halilhodzic’s leadership.
Drogba’s first was a scrappy effort on the stroke of half-time, which gave the Blues a 2-0 lead after captain John Terry had opened the scoring after 29 minutes.
However, Drogba’s third goal was a memorable one and infuriated the already upset home fans.
The Ivorian stepped up and curled a delightful free-kick over the wall to complete the scoring at 3-0, handing Mourinho a winning start in the Champions League with Chelsea.
3. Branislav Ivanovic vs. PSG: Parc Des Princes, 2015
Coming into the first leg of last season’s encounter in the French capital, PSG were determined not to repeat the mistake they made the year before by conceding an away goal to Chelsea.
Just 36 minutes into the opening encounter, Branislav Ivanovic shattered those hopes with an excellent headed effort for Jose Mourinho’s men.
The Serbia international powerfully nodded in a Gary Cahill flick from a rare John Terry cross to give the Blues the lead in a hard-fought encounter.
Les Parisiens eventually equalised through Edinson Cavani, and the first leg finished 1-1. In the return encounter, the 10 men of PSG forced a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge and edged through on away goals.
2. Ezequiel Lavezzi vs. Chelsea: Parc Des Princes, 2014
Chelsea had to overcome a two-goal deficit to stay in the Champions League back in 2014 after PSG beat them 3-1 at Parc des Princes to take a healthy lead to Stamford Bridge for the return.
Eden Hazard’s away-goal penalty in the first half ultimately proved to be costly for Laurent Blanc’s men, but PSG initially raced out of the blocks and looked hungry to progress at the Blues’ expense.
Ezequiel Lavezzi gave the hosts the perfect start, superbly volleying them into the lead inside three minutes.
Blaise Matuidi provided a dangerous cross, and John Terry could only head the ball into the path of the Argentina international. In a rare clinical mood that day, El Pocho thumped the ball past Petr Cech to the delight of the Parc des Princes crowd.
A David Luiz own goal gave PSG a 2-1 lead just after the hour before a sensational Javier Pastore solo effort wrapped up a 3-1 win for Les Parisiens, who thought they had done enough to reach the semi-finals that night.
Andre Schurrle and Demba Ba had other ideas, though.
1. Javier Pastore vs. Chelsea: Parc Des Princes, 2014
If Ezequiel Lavezzi’s stunning opening goal sent the Parc des Princes home crowd crazy, then Javier Pastore’s sublime late third had them in ecstasy.
With five minutes to go in Paris, El Flaco—who was enduring a barren run of form at this point—was sent on in place of his fellow Argentina international to try to help the hosts find a late goal.
The former Palermo man did just that, netting a virtuoso solo effort that helped resurrect his stalling career in the French capital.
Pastore picked up the ball on the right, danced around two players and then held off his nearest marker before firing an angled low shot past Petr Cech to complete the 3-1 victory.
It was a superb goal—still one of the South American’s best for PSG—but it was not enough to help the French champions knock out Chelsea.
Jose Mourinho’s men recovered with a 2-0 victory at Stamford Bridge to send the Ligue 1 giants crashing out, and it was not until the following season that Pastore really breathed new life into his PSG career.