Kylian Mbappe and Bradley Barcola Shine as PSG Secures 2-0 Victory Against Real Sociedad in Champions League Last-16 Clash

Paris Saint-Germain secured a crucial 2-0 victory over Real Sociedad in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie. Kylian Mbappe and emerging winger Bradley Barcola were the heroes, scoring in the second half to give PSG a comfortable lead heading into the return leg in Spain.

Despite a lackluster first-half performance by PSG, Mbappe broke the deadlock just before the hour mark, converting a volley from Marquinhos’ corner. Three minutes later, Barcola doubled the lead with a well-taken goal. Real Sociedad, missing key players and on a goalless streak, struggled to mount a comeback.

Mbappe, expected to leave PSG at the end of the season, emphasized the importance of scoring at key moments and securing a clean sheet. Captain Marquinhos acknowledged their first-half difficulties but credited a halftime talk from the coach for an improved second-half performance.

The pressure was on PSG, having faced early exits in previous seasons, while Real Sociedad appeared in their first Champions League knockout tie in two decades. The victory gives PSG a strong position for the second leg, with Sociedad needing a comeback in San Sebastián on March 5.

The match showcased PSG’s resilience and the growing impact of 21-year-old Bradley Barcola, who expressed his joy at fulfilling a childhood dream with his first Champions League goal. The absence of key Sociedad players, including captain Mikel Oyarzabal, and their recent struggles added to the challenges they faced.

PSG, despite a history of early Champions League exits, now looks poised to advance to the quarterfinals. The return leg is crucial for both teams, with Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi expressing confidence based on their strong group stage performances.

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