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Chelsea out of Champions League as PSG progress

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Chelsea saw their season go from bad to worse after Guus Hiddink’s side were knocked out of the Champions League by PSG.

The French Champions were by far the better side over the two legs, and a 1-2 victory at Stamford Bridge saw Les Parisens progress to the quarter-finals for the second successive season.

Laurent Blanc’s side had a slender 2-1 advantage after the first leg in Paris, and they took an early lead in London after the in-form Zlatan Ibrahimovic crossed for Adrien Rabiot to net from close range.

Diego Costa leveled the score on the night before the break, before the Spaniard was substituted on the hour after picking up a knock. Then, to add further insult to injury, Ibrahimovic latched onto Angel Di Maria’s delivery to put the tie beyond any doubt.

The visitors, who also knocked the Blues out on away goals at this stage last season, ended the night in total control and eased through to the quarter-finals.

With Chelsea 10th in the Premier League, Roman Abramovich could see his side face the possibility of not playing in a European competition next season for the first time under his tenure since he arrived back in 2003.

After Abramovich took charge of Chelsea, winning the Premier League was his priority, something he has achieved multiple times, but then wanted to win the Champions League; something the Blues have done just once after a penalty shootout victory over Bayern Munich in 2012.

Chelsea have a good chance of reaching the FA Cup final, but failing that the likelihood of European football would be the Europa League at best, something Chelsea have also won under the Russian owner.

With manager Guus Hiddink only in charge on an interim basis, Abramovich and Chelsea, who have been heavily linked with coach Antonio Conte, may find it difficult to find their next manager with European football not on the agenda.

Despite elimination from this stage in the last two seasons, Chelsea’s new manager can rely on a strong financial backing from the owner as a major rebuild looks set to be on the cards.

As for PSG, they’ve began to challenge in Europe. After dominating in Ligue 1 for the past four season’s, the Champions League is now the French club’s main objective.


Antonio Conte guus hiddink PSG Roman Abramovich

About Dale Ventham

Dale Ventham is an editor at The Sports Lowdown. He writes on the lower leagues of English football and Speedway in particular.

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