THE MATCH: IRRESISTABLE PARIS!
Time to do it all over again! In theory at least, because out on the pitch, both sides made a raft of changes to their respective starting XIs (8 changes for PSG, 6 for OM). But like 72 hours earlier in Ligue 1, all 22 players on the pitch were quickly into Classico mode. In the space of two minutes, Berchiche (8') and then Cavani (10') got the crowd in a sold-out Parc des Princes on their feet, but Mandanda was equal to the task. Like on Sunday, Mbappé was in fine form, but after an electric start, the game slowed in pace as both sides stood off in a prolonged round of observation and cat and mouse, despite Paris enjoying nearly 70% possession. It took until the 35th minute for Marseille to fire at goal, when Thauvin shot over. Angel Di Maria then stepped up with a stunning curling effort that Mandanda tipped around his post (37')! The arctic conditions in the Parc sore the score frozen at nil-all... until 20 seconds before the half-time break. Thiago Motta and Julian Draxler set up Di Maria who beat Mandanda at his near-post with a crisp right-footed effort from the edge of the area (1-0, 45+1')!
The half-time break did little to calm Di Maria's attacking instincts... Released by Draxler down the left, Yuri Berchiche crossed and the Argentine was on hand to fire home his second of the night, with the help of a deflection off Sakai (2-0, 48')! PSG were enjoying themselves, illustrated by Draxler's spectacular bicycle kick that flashed just the wrong side of the upright (65'). The German consoled himself with wonderful assist - his second of the night - for Edinson Cavani, who blasted home a superb half-volley (3-0, 81'). Unstoppable... just like PSG!
A MAN IN THE MATCH: DI MARIA'S CUP DREAM!
Tonight, Angel Di Maria twice showed off his clinical eye for goal… with his right-foot! A perfect half-volley (45+1') and a simple side-foot finish (48'): two shots that saw the Paris No.11 turn the game in the capital club's favour. The Argentina star clearly loves the Coupe de France, as this latest brace takes his tally to eight goals and seven assists in just 11 matches in the competition. He has now netted seven goals in the Cup this season!
WHAT WE LEARNED:
By dousing Marseille's ambitions in a frozen Parc des Princes, Paris recorded their 22nd consecutive Coupe de France victory; their 39th win in a row in the two domestic cup competitions combined! This historic performance sees Les Rouge et Bleu join two third-division sides in the semi-finals, in the form of Les Herbiers and Chambly, before Caen face Lyon tomorrow. Just six days out from the must-win match against Real Madrid in the Champions League, PSG have once again shown how much they love these sudden-death matches...