Paris St Germain reached their first ever Champions League final with a convincing 3-0 win over RB Leipzig on Tuesday, finally delivering the reward of the biggest game in European football for their Qatari backers.Goals from Marquinhos and Angel Di Maria put PSG 2-0 up at the interval and Juan Bernat added the third in the 56th minute for what was a comfortable victory at the Estadio da Luz.The French club, celebrating the 50th anniversary of their founding in 1970, will meet the winner of Wednesday’s other semi between Bayern Munich and Olympique Lyonnais after ending what some felt was a mental block in the knockout stages. With French World Cup winning forward Kylian Mbappe back in the starting line-up after fully recovering from his ankle injury, Tuchel was able to field his preferred attacking trident with Brazilian Neymar and Di Maria.Right from the outset, PSG looked a threat to the Leipzig defense with Neymar clipping the post after he was slipped in by Mbappe in the sixth minute.Seven minutes later though, PSG had the lead — Neymar and Di Maria lined up to take a free kick on the left and it was the Argentine who floated in a lovely cross which was nodded home by Marquinhos.Former Real Madrid and Manchester United winger Di Maria was in fine form, constantly probing, while Neymar created from deep and Mbappe pushed on to the last defender looking to use his pace.The Germans were struggling but did threaten in the 25th minute when Konrad Laimer burst down the right and found Yussuf Poulsen but the forward’s shot was just off target.Neymar then went close with an audacious free kick from deep and wide on the right, the former Barcelona man going for Peter Gulacsi’s near post and striking the post as the Hungarian keeper scrambled.It was a poor clearance from the keeper which led to PSG’s second. Leandro Paredes collected the ball and then found Neymar who cleverly flicked it with the back of his heel into the path of Di Maria who made no mistake.Beyond doubtLeipzig’s 33-year-old coach Julian Nagelsmann needed to find some way to shift the momentum of the game and made two changes at the break but after a bright start, PSG put the outcome beyond doubt.Leipzig defender Nordi Mukiele slipped while attempting to clear, allowing Di Maria to cross the ball back in to the box and Bernat’s glancing header floated into the far corner.Mbappe forced a good save out of Gulacsi as PSG pushed for a fourth while PSG keeper Sergio Rico had his hands warmed by a fierce drive from fellow Spaniard Angelino.”After the second goal, the belief of our players went down a little bit,” said Nagelsmann.”That’s normal. It’s not that easy right now to think about the good season we’ve had in the Champions League but in one week it will be ok. We know that it was a good season for a young team and we will try to do it again next season,” he said.The French club have played 110 games in the competition – the most played by a side before reaching their first final, overtaking Arsenal’s record of 90 between 1971-2006.PSG’s only other appearances in the final of a European competition came with their UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup victory in 1996 and their runners-up spot in the following season.Olympique Marseille are the only French team to win the European Cup, triumphing over AC Milan in 1993. PSG have gone out in the last 16 for the past three years, but they proved a step too far for Leipzig, who were playing in the regional leagues just 11 years ago.The Germans, financed by the Red Bull energy drink company, have outperformed all expectations by reaching the last four, knocking out Tottenham Hotspur and Atletico Madrid en route.”We showed quality and determination. A good mix. We deserved to win,” said Tuchel, who had faced a heavy expectation to deliver in Europe this season.”I felt the pressure, it was not easy. I have players who are used to playing with this pressure, who like this pressure and these decisive matches.” Topics :
GUYANESE motor racer Calvin Ming was among some drivers as the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship, powered by Mazda, wrapped up two days of testing at the Homestead-Miami Speedway South Florida Racecourse, yesterday. At the end of yesterday’s session, Ming’s best time was 1:25.006 seconds, just 0.44 seconds off the session’s fastest time around the 2.21-mile facility, 1:24.562 by Oliver Askew in the Cape Motorsports car.Rinus Veekay (Newman Wachs Racing) was second with a time of 1:24.61, followed by the team Pelfry duo of Robert Megennis (1:24.67) and Kaylen Frederick (1:24.71) and then Calvin.On day two, Veekay posted the fastest time, 1:24.99 with Askew 0.1 second off the pace, Victor Franzoni (ArmsUp Motorsports), Andre Castro (Newman Wachs Racing), Kory Enders (Force Racing) and then Ming. The gap to Veekay and Ming was .4 seconds.Speaking to Chronicle Sport, the driver said, “It was a good two-day test. I got some more practice with the car and I’m happy with the progress we’ve made so far.Rounds one and two take place from March 10-12 in St Petersburg Florida at the Streets of St Petersburg Circuit, a 1.8-mile course encompassing 14 corners of varying degreesTwenty-one cars are expected to take the grid. (Stephan Sookram)
Badger men’s cross-country will once again reach NCAA podium in 2013 campaignEvery August, Badger Nation prepares to devote all eyes, ears and hearts to the 2013 football season. But fans should not forget one of Wisconsin’s most winning programs is back this fall too.The men’s cross-country team is primed for another successful year, with experience and history on its side.Finishing second in the NCAA tournament last season, UW is no stranger to success. With a record 41-straight NCAA championship appearances and 22 top-three finishes, including the past three seasons, this Badger squad is the definition of Wisconsin athletic achievements. And this season, the team is not looking to miss a step.The Badgers return four of their top seven runners from last year’s championship race. Senior Rob Finnerty and junior Alex Hatz are atop the pack who are back this fall and the duo have the experience to lead this team to the NCAA champions podium once again. Both were a source of consistency for UW last season and Finnerty showed he could come through for the team when it counted the most by recording his career-best time in the NCAA race to place fourth for UW. Hatz was right behind him as the fifth scorer for UW.While Finnerty, Hatz and the rest of the UW squad have large shoes to fill after losing three All Americans in Mohammed Ahmed, Maverick Darling and Reed Connor, new talent has arrived. Redshirt freshman Malachy Schrobilgen brings more experience having spent the past year competing in the 2013 IIAF World Junior Cross country championships.And if raw talent is enough to propel this team forward, they have a man who knows the recipe for success behind them. Head Coach Mick Byrne has earned coach of the year awards for 22-straight seasons including the past five years at Wisconsin and has brought the UW squad to the NCAA championship podium four times.Bottom line: If you are looking for a new team to get behind this fall and like to watch a winning squad, these Badger men are your best bet.Wisconsin women’s soccer eyeing redemption in NCAA tournament after early exit Sure the cross-country team is good. Some might say great even. But if you’re looking for the best non-football program to pay attention to this fall, the women’s soccer team is more than worth your time.Despite finishing a mediocre sixth out of twelve last season in the Big Ten, Wisconsin earned an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament last fall after its first 12-win season since 2005. Armed with a bevy of talent – including returning leading goalscorer junior Cara Walls – and a healthy chip on their shoulder following a first-round exit in the first round of the NCAA tournament last year, the Badgers return this fall with something they didn’t have last season: experience.In a squad that contained 11 freshmen last fall, many young players were called on to play big roles for Wisconsin. Now with one year in the competitive Big Ten under their belts, this season promises to be better than the last.Don’t believe me?Take a look at their statistics already this fall.As of Aug. 29, Wisconsin has played one exhibition game and two nonconference regular season games – all of them resulting in wins for UW.In that relatively small sample size the Badgers have terrorized their opponents. Against Marquette (currently ranked No. 20 in the country), they scored five goals. Then against Connecticut they poured in three more, before most recently torching Illinois State for four goals. If that is any indication of what is to come this year, fans lucky enough to pay attention could be in for a treat. Where else do you see a soccer team scoring an average of four goals a game? I’ll give you a hint, you don’t. So yeah, you could go watch the ever-talented men’s cross country team compete for yet another National Championship, but where is the fun in that?Follow the women’s soccer team and you join it on an underdog quest as team members seek to stun their opponents on the way to an unlikely NCAA tournament run.
This weather report is brought to you by Newman Windows and Doors: Simply the best in Hurricane Coverage and Code Red Roofers. The roofers that respond.Get up to the moment Hurricane information by visiting our Storm Central page here:Storm Central The National Hurricane Center is reporting that area of low pressure that is currently moving through the Central Bahamas now has a 60% chance of development which could lead to the formation of a tropical depression.The system is moving west-northwestward at around 15 mph and is expected to stay off of the east coast of Florida, however, heavy rain, thunderstorms, and gusty winds with the possibility of isolated flooding Monday night through Tuesday.