Leicester City continued their fantastic run of form with a 2-0 second leg victory over Sevilla to move into the quarter-finals for the first time in the club’s history; Juventus had a much easier path beating Porto 3-0 on aggregate.
There were signs that Leicester City was turning the corner when they managed to cling on for dear life like a kite in a storm during their battering in Sevilla a few weeks ago.
A Jamie Vardy goal gave Leicester hope in a 2-1 defeat, but the Leicester owners didn’t see promise – they sacked Claudio Ranieri and gave Craig Shakespeare the task of trying to save the club from relegation.
Three games later and Shakespeare has won them all, guiding the Champions three points clear of the relegation zone and into the quarter-finals of the Champions League after a thrilling night at the King Power Stadium.
It was a scintillating night of football.
Samir Nasri should have put Sevilla ahead early in the first half, but Kasper Schmeichel once again proved that he is becoming a world class keeper, diving at his near post to clear from the Frenchman.
Riyad Mahrez floated in a free-kick from the left, and Wes Morgan managed to bundle the ball into the net off a part of his leg to give Leicester the lead and bring the tie to an even keel at 2-2.
Sevilla left-back, Sergio Escudero, saw his long-range effort cannon off the crossbar with Schmeichel well beaten, but Leicester moved up the other end, and Marc Albrighton brought the ball down on his chest before smashing the ball home to give Leicester a 3-2 lead.
Sevilla poured forward in search of a goal that would generate an additional 30-minutes, but Nasri made their task Herculean when he head-butted Vardy and ended up in a cold shower.
A few minutes later and the King Power was silent. Robert Huth brought down Vitolo in the box, but that man Schmeichel saved the penalty much to the joy of his father applauding in the stands.
Jamie Vardy missed a glut of chances to finish the match off, the Sevilla coach was sent off, but in the end, Leicester held on, and Sevilla only has themselves to blame for missing so many chances during their dominance in the first leg.
Well, they go marching on towards their second improbable fairytale in successive years.
The Old Lady Goes Through
Joining Leicester City in the last eight is the Italian champions Juventus. The Old Lady had done the hard work in Portugal several weeks ago emerging with a 2-0 win and were +700 to clean up at the Juventus Stadium.
Things were made much easier when Maxi Pereira was sent off for deliberate handball in the box, and Paulo Dybala smashed the penalty past Iker Casillas to make the score 3-0 meaning 10-men Porto had to score four without reply.
It was never going to happen.
Juventus, who have an eight-point lead at the top of Serie A, move into the quarter-finals for the second time in four years.
Leicester 2 v 0 Sevilla (3-2 Agg)
Juventus 1 v 0 Porto (3-0 Agg)
To be Played
Wed, 15 March
Atletico (4) v Bayer (2)
Monaco (3) v Man City (5)
Champions League Odds (Courtesy of Bodog)
Bayern Munich +300
Real Madrid +450
Man City +1100