Champions League

Lucas and Ibrahimovic fire PSG to victory

Lucas and Zlatan Ibrahimovic grabbed the goals as Paris Saint-Germain eased to a 2-0 Champions League win over Shakhtar Donetsk at the Parc des Princes on Tuesday.

The hosts were already guaranteed second place in Group A, while Shakhtar needed to at least match Malmo’s result against Real Madrid in order to clinch third spot – and Europa League football – and they did just that following the Swedes’ 8-0 thrashing at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Lucas put the home side ahead 12 minutes into the second half and Ibrahimovic – not long after he made a goal-line clearance – doubled their lead with four minutes to go.

Both sides showed plenty of attacking intent early on and Laurent Blanc’s men first threatened in the fourth minute when Lucas tried his luck from the edge of the area, only for Shakhtar goalkeeper Anton Kanibolotskiy to make a comfortable save.

The visitors responded immediately, however, Ismaily sending in a fine low cross from the left for the unmarked Eduardo but the former Arsenal man somehow contrived to put his effort wide from five yards out.

The Ligue 1 champions had a major chance of their own in the ninth minute. Kanibolotskiy gifted the ball to Ibrahimovic with a sloppy pass from the back, but the Swede aimed just too high as his clever attempt went over the crossbar.

There were half chances for Eduardo and Yaroslav Rakitskiy as the first period drifted following an absorbing start but neither troubled PSG goalkeeper Kevin Trapp.

PSG made a strong start to the second half and could have gone a goal up via Gregory van der Wiel, only for the Dutchman to aim inches wide after being set up by Ibrahimovic.


PSG eventually got their goal after a superb counterattack in the 57th minute. Blaise Matuidi won possession inside his own half before setting up Ezequiel Lavezzi down the left, who in turn picked out Ibrahimovic. The striker shrugged off his marker, played in Lucas and the Brazil international found the net with a low finish into the far corner.

Darijo Srna nearly levelled with an opportunistic volley from the right-hand side of the area, but his attempt went just wide of the far post.

Lavezzi and Ibrahimovic had chances to double PSG’s lead, but both failed to beat Kanibolotskiy.

The powerful Swede did make an impact at the other end, though, as he prevented an equaliser from Rakitskiy with a superb goal-line clearance.

And he then had the final say, running on to Lucas’ flick to finish low at the near post.

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