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Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc has urged his players “to go as far as possible in the UEFA Champions League” after they reached the quarter-finals thanks to a 6-1 aggregate win against Bayer Leverkusen.
The reigning French Ligue 1 champions had virtually sealed their place in the last-eight after a comprehensive 4-0 first leg win away in Germany against the Bundesliga outfit.
However, with Blanc opting to make changes to his side for the return leg at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday night, Paris Saint-Germain had a shaky start with Sidney Sam putting Leverkusen ahead after just six minutes.
But any thoughts of a miraculous comeback from Sami Hyypia’s side quickly evaporated when Marquinhos headed the hosts level just seven minutes later.
Leverkusen should have gone back in front just before the half-hour when they were awarded a penalty but Simon Rolfes saw his spot-kick saved by Salvatore Sirigu.
PSG responded well to the let-off and won the game 2-1 on the night thanks to Ezequiel Lavezzi’s goal at the start of the second half before Leverkusen lost Emre Can to a red card.
Afterwards Blanc felt the side’s inexperience of Champions League football was behind their poor start to the game, but he is hoping they can now push on and enjoy “a very, very good season”.
He added: “The club’s objective is to go as far as possible in the UEFA Champions League. I think the other sides in Europe continue to think more and more of Paris Saint-Germain.
“We are in the quarter-finals; we have worked very hard to get here and we will keep on working very hard to keep going.”