The first eight matches of the Champions League round of 16 have gone by, with only one home team (Olympiacos) getting a win, while the rest of the prematch favorites, including Barcelona and Bayern Munich in what originally looked like tough matches, taking care of business early and almost securing their spot in the quarterfinals.
Bayer Leverkusen 0 PSG 4: The first example of how Elite European teams are so much better than Bundesliga teams not called Bayern Munich. The French champions are 100% in the quarterfinals after an impressive away win with goals from Balise Matuidi, Zlatan Ibrahimovic (twice, including one golazo) and a second half desert from Yohan Cabaye.
Manchester City 0 Barcelona 2: The bottom line is Barcelona getting a huge advantage heading into the second leg with their away win, but what most will remember is Martin Demichelis fouling Lionel Messi on his way to a goal, resulting in a red card (justified) and a penalty kick (justified as well), leading to the match becoming quite one sided. Dani Alves scored the second, important one, in the 90th minute.
AC Milan 0 Atletico Madrid 1: Probably the ugliest match of the first batch, as Atletico went on to defend for the first 75 minutes before opening up a little bit, while Milan are simply not good enough to do something against a team defending so well and aggressively. A Diego Costa goal in the 83rd minute decided the match.
Arsenal 0 Bayern Munich 2: Same thing, more or less. Bayern were the better side but not completely dominant until a red card to Wojciech Sczcesny changed everything. Arsenal missed a penalty and so did Bayern, but Toni Kroos broke the deadlock with a beautiful goal and Thomas Muller added the finishing touch late in the match.
Zenit 2 Dortmund 4: If there was a comical match among the first legs, this was it. Atrocious defending from both teams and a Zenit team so poor they probably should have stayed in hibernation. Marco Reus, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and two Robert Lewandowski goals made life very easy for Dortmund, while Zenit scored two goals that shouldn’t have been: Hulk from a made up penalty kick and Oleg Shatov with a Zenit player in an offside position earlier in the play.
Olympiacos 2 Manchester United 0: The only home win in the eight matches, as Olympiacos were probably surprised at how weak Manchester United were throughout the entire 90 minutes, creating only one good chance. Alejandro Dominguez scored the opener and Joel Campbell provided a beautiful curler for the second.
Galatasaray 1 Chelsea 1: The first half mostly belonged to Chelsea who also got the lead through Fernando Torres; the second one was all about Galatasaray plowing through the negative tactics of the English side, and getting their equalizer from Aurelien Chedjou, and probably deserved a winner as well.
Schalke 1 Real Madrid 6: A demolition derby in Germany, with another Bundesliga team humiliated at home. Karim Benzema with two goals, Gareth Bale with two and Cristiano Ronaldo with a couple haven’t had it this easy in a long time, while Klaas Jan-Huntelaar provided one of the best consolation goals we’ve ever seen.