Paris Saint-Germain sent shockwaves through the European football fraternity on the opening night of the Champions League knockout stages. Expected to provide stubborn, but ultimately futile resistance against the 7/2 (4.50) market principles, PSG put on a dominant display which leaves Barcelona's hopes of progressing, let alone claiming another title, dangling by a thread. From a pre-match price of 33/1 (34.0), the Ligue 1 outfit are now just 6/1 (7.0) to go all the way in Europe this term.
A double from Angel Di Maria, plus goals from Edinson Cavani and Julian Draxler gave the home side a commanding 4-0 advantage and means Luis Enrique's men have a mountain to climb when they welcome the French champions to the Camp Nou for the reverse fixture. Such a display of clinical finishing means bet365 go 10/1 (11.0) that the Spanish side are able to turn the tie around in the Catalan capital and 40/1 (41.0) that they complete what would be an astonishing turnaround to triumph in the final.
The qualification market may still have been in the balance had the tie ended with the 2-0 scoreline that PSG were able to establish by half time, but Unai Emery's men showed no signs of backing off and continued to cause the visiting defence a myriad of problems, to which they had no response.
A home 4-0 win, which would take the tie into extra time is available at a hefty 18/1 (19.0) but in truth, there is every chance that the French side will be able to take advantage of the match situation, breaking quickly on the counter-attack and scoring at least one goal of thier own, an event that would surely put qualification well beyond Enrique's side.
Both teams to score in the second meeting is just 8/13 (1.62) and the over 3.5 goals line, which currently stands at 11/10 (2.10) could well prove popular with the hosts looking to force the issue and give themselves even a slim chance of progression.
Barca's attack were as lacklustre as the hosts were brilliant. Lionel Messi, the tournament's leading scorer with 10 goals and red-hot 1/6 (1.17) favourite to top the scoring charts, may now only have one more game to improve his tally. The Argentina international is still a 1/3 (1.33) shot, such is the commanding nature of his lead over nearest rivals Cavani (7/1), Robert Lewandowski (8/1) and Cristiano Ronaldo (20/1).