PSG survives scare as Juventus cruises into quarterfinals

Ezequiel Lavezzi's equalizer earned Paris Saint-Germain a 1-1 draw against Valencia to send it into the last eight.

Story highlights

  • Paris Saint-Germain through to quarterfinals of European Champions League
  • PSG holds Valencia 1-1 to progress 3-2 on aggregate
  • Juventus defeats Celtic 2-0 to complete 5-0 overall victory

There was no Zlatan Ibrahimovic, there was no David Beckham and for a while, it appeared that there might not have been any more Champions League football in the French capital.

But Paris Saint-Germain, without the suspended Ibrahimovic and benched Beckham, booked its place in the quarterfinals for the first time since 1995 following a 1-1 draw with Valencia.

The result, which sends PSG through to the last eight 3-2 on aggregate courtesy of its win in Spain three weeks ago, had been in some doubt following Jonas' fine strike.

Beckham shows he can still cut it

Valencia had looked finished in the first leg, trailing 2-0 before a last minute effort enabled it to cling on to the possibility of producing an unlikely comeback.

That outcome appeared possible soon after the interval when Jonas lashed home a powerful effort to stun the home crowd.

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With Valencia needing just one more goal to progress, PSG began to awake from its slumber with the introduction of striker Kevin Gameiro.

And it was the substitute who made the difference, running through the Valencia defense before the ball found its way into the path of Ezequiel Lavezzi, who slotted home his fifth goal of this year's competition.

PSG has invested heavily in the transfer market in recent seasons, spending a reported $260 million bringing in the likes of Javier Pastore, defender Thiago Silva, striker Ibrahimovic and Lucas Moura along with several others.

Read: Is Ibrahimovic a hero or villain?

The arrivals of Lavezzi, Marco Verratti and the highly publicized acquisition of David Beckham has bolstered the PSG brand, which is heavily backed by a subsidiary of the government of Qatar.

And with his team top of Ligue 1 by two points and through to the next stage of Europe's elite competition, it looks like money well spent by manager Carlo Ancelotti.

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"We deserved our qualification over the two legs," he told reporters.

"We didn't play in a relaxed manner in the first half, but paradoxically it was after Valencia scored that we started to play and cause them problems."

Valencia coach Ernesto Valverde was left disappointed with the result but admitted that he could not criticize his players for their performance.

"It was a hard-fought game," he said. "We wanted to score the first goal and make them nervous, but in the end it wasn't to be.

"I am satisfied with the way the team played, even if I'm not happy to be out."

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Juventus leaves Celtic's Champions League dream in tatters

In the night's other game, Juventus cruised past Celtic 2-0 to complete a comfortable 5-0 aggregate win.

Alessandro Matri and Fabio Quagliarella were both on target as Juventus secured its place in the last eight for the first time since 2006.

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Celtic, which had beaten Barcelona in the Group Stage of the competition, rarely threatened and was comprehensively outplayed over the two legs.

But manager Neil Lennon refused to be downcast, instead preferring to concentrate on his side's run to the last-16.

"The support of the club is amazing and it is a privilege to manage them. It has been a fantastic experience," Lennon told Sky Sports.

"We have been brilliant in the league. I do not like losing. As you get older, you learn from other managers.

"Even the greatest managers lose their temper from time to team. We want to see our team perform all the time and we are under scrutiny all the time. I would rather be managing here than at other clubs.

"You do not know the circumstances of next season, I may never get to do this again. The two games against Barcelona were titanic and I will take them in the memory bank. I hope we have plenty more of those to come."

Real sinks Man Utd

Meanwhile, Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson and his players are facing disciplinary action from UEFA after refusing to speak to the media following the team's controversial defeat Tuesday.

United, which was beaten 2-1 by Real Madrid at Old Trafford, was angered by the sending off of Nani by Turkish referee Cuneyt Cakir.

Ferguson did not attend the mandatory press conference following the contest, while players did not talk to media in the mixed zone.

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