Sixteen teams, qualified from the group stages of 2017/18 campaign, aims higher now to qualify for the quarter finals as we reach the halfway stage in the round of sixteen after the conclusion of first set of games of both legged ties.
Some of them already played the decider with their outrageous performances while others wait for a dramatic end in the returning leg.
Throughout the tie some known faces and enraging talents showcased their brilliance for their team and its fan and of course to set a foot ahead for the quarter finals.
Here, we pick out the best eleven performers who made champions league nights remarkable once again.
The team is set on a 3-4-3 formation, considering the fact that it was attacking front of majority of teams which gave the defenders a nightmare of ninety minutes with no ground to complain.
1) David De Gea- Goalkeeper (Manchester United) :
It gets better with every watch. Another ? stop from De Gea ?
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) February 21, 2018
And who else? In a goal fest show around Europe where goalkeepers struggled to keep a clean sheet, the Spaniard once again recall the art of goalkeeping to save the day for Manchester United. Against the determine Sevilla side De Gea’s undescribable performance avoided the host to leap ahead in the tie and to favour his team to play with a home advantage in the second leg.
2) Marcelo- Defender (Real Madrid):
The Brazilian left back proved his worth again and showed that there are less challengers in his role to call him the best. Marcelo led Zidane brigade to attack strongly against one of the title contenders, Paris Saint Germain with his rapid overlapping runs. And not only his outstanding passes or silky passes was admiring but also the goal he scored which allowed Real to confidently travel to Parc des Princes with a two goal advantage.
3) Chiellini – Defender(Juventus)
Throughout the first leg when teams shivered in the defense, Juventus’s defensive blocker Chiellini proved why ‘old is gold’. Though he failed to resist English opposition Spurs from scoring, he acted as a shield to minimise the defense laden by Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen.
4) Dani Alves- Defender (Paris Saint Germain):
When one Brazilian mastered his flank, another earned his name on the opposite one. Even though he was a member of the losing side at Santiago Buarnabeu, Alves speed and agility caused sixes and sevens in Madrid’s defense. Plus, his long ball searching for Neymar and Mbappe was a constant threat in a night his club wished to deserve more.
5) Willian- Midfielder (Chelsea):
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 21, 2018
The stock of Brazilian sensation doesn’t seemed to end and as Willian almost grabbed the headline with his scoring in the second half and less fortunately striking the upright twice against Barcelona in a tactical battle between Conte and Valverde. His swiftness and never retarding energy was helpful to make blue’s counter attacking football of the evening productive.
6) Mousa Dembele -Midfielder (Tottenham):
Saying about defensive mid fielders, Dembele’s role against Juventus was a gigantic one. He had to keep the trust of his manager to man mark Pjianic which he did superbly and helped Spurs to dominate the midfield. He stood like a pillar and went for vital interception, in brief a repeat of his glorious contribution in the north London derby, which kept the Italian giants shaking their heads.
7) Ikay Gundogan- Midfielder (Manchester City):
In a star packed City side and with some class players in midfield, Gundogan offered fantastic football to make himself one of them against a bemused Basel side. The Swiss club absolutely had no answer to the German’s attacking prowess which made him to score two magnificent goals and settle the tie ahead of the second leg at Etihad. His partnership with De Bruyne was also eye catching.
8) Marco Asensio- Midfielder (Real Madrid):
The tactical changes that Zidane made, Asensio was one of them who helped Real Madrid to attack, taking the width of the pitch. His instant impact was to make two assist for Ronaldo and Marcelo to score down the left hand channel and in making the tie almost out of PSG’s reach.
9) Lionel Messi- Forward (Fc Barcelona):
The Argentinian superstar proved again that no vacancy lives long. Against Chelsea, an opposition against whom he didn’t scored any time in eight games, Messi picked up a vital goal to get back to Camp Nou with that away goal in hand.
10) Cristiano Ronaldo- Forward (Real Madrid):
No critics can dilute him. The Portuguese megastar rose to the occasion once again in big stage and delivered two goals at the crucial moment when his team needed him the most. Against PSG, Cristiano proved why he stage himself in best of best.
11) Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich):
With so many goals scored and strikers saluted their accurate finishing, it is really hard to spot out just who can enter in the number nine position. Nonetheless, Lewandoswki scored two goals and aided the way for more to come as Bayern outclass Besiktas 5-0 at Allianz Arena. The Polish scorer movement inside the box gave the opposition defense a tough time to cage him from striking.
But apart from these star studded team, some could have easily made the cut.
1. Thomas Muller- Forward (Bayern Munich): The German never back down to aim at goal and make some clever runs to keep oppositions at bay. He opened the scoring in a tight affair with the Turkish champions in the first half allowing his team to breathe relief.
2. Eden Hazard- Forward (Chelsea): Nothing taken away from the Belgium masterclass, Hazard could have made the eleven in any day. For him acting as a false nine, Barcelona went through a tough time to track his movement in and around the box.