Verratti Reflects on the Key Factors Behind PSG’s Champions League First Leg Win Over Barcelona

Marco Verratti has detailed just how Paris Saint-Germain was able to pick up the convincing 4-1 UEFA Champions League Round of 16 first leg win over FC Barcelona.

PSG put together the best performance of its season in the Champions League clash against Barca. The reigning Ligue 1 champions scored four thunderous goals and held Barca to a lone penalty goal.

As the midfielder told PSG TV, there were plenty of factors that played a key role in his side’s massive win.

“I think that when you win 4-1 in Barcelona, you have definitely put in an almost perfect match,” Verratti said. “We created chances and defended well. We ran together, we put in a very good match, when we had the ball and when we didn’t.

“The coach prepared us excellently for the match, which is what allowed us to dominate. We need to learn from our defeats, we need to show on the pitch that we are a more mature team than a few years ago.”

Verratti had one strong performance in the fixture, such as with assisting Kylian Mbappe for his first of three goals scored in the match. The Italian midfielder is crediting one pivotal tactical aspect for his overall performance.

“With the coach, I feel that I have more freedom, I am able to go where I want on the pitch and to find spaces, to play further up the pitch,” Verratti said.

“On several occasions, I got into the box and in the box, it’s easier to make an assist. I needed to give Kylian to perfect ball. These are things that we do in training. We are learning every day and we hope that as time goes by, we will continue to get better.”

The Italian midfielder is not yet looking ahead to the return fixture against Barca, especially as PSG has several upcoming key domestic fixtures.

“We can’t afford to think about it, if we were in first place in the league we could possibly get by and only think about Barcelona, but in the current situation, we can’t do so,” Verratti said. “We need to think about Dijon, Bordeaux and then the Coupe de France. These are very important matches for us.”

PSG will be looking to clinch a spot in the Champions League quarterfinals for the second straight season.

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Tags Barcelona Champions League Marco Verratti
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