Wild Wednesday in the UEFA Champions League

Tuesday might have been business as usual in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals with both favorites picking up wins, but Wednesday was anything but.

The craziness started in Paris where Paris Saint Germain defender David Luiz picked up a yellow card a mere 15 seconds into the match for a rash challenge that some will say could have warranted a straight red. 11 minutes later Luiz was involved on the other end of the pitch, winning what may be conceived as a soft penalty, though in a ball don’t lie moment it was promptly saved by Joe Hart.

PSG would spent most of the first half dominating play but unable to find the breakthrough. In addition to missing a penalty, Ibrahimovic also got a one on one chance with goalkeeper Joe Hart that he sent over the bar.

While many people weren’t giving Manchester City a chance in this match, especially given their issues on defense, there’s no denying their quality up front. Quality that’s good enough to make you pay for mistakes.

And that’s exactly what happened when PSG midfielder Blaise Matuidi was careless with the ball in the 38th minute. Manchester City pounced on his error and seconds later Kevin de Bruyne fired them into a lead against the run of play. More importantly, City now had a vital away goal to take with them back to Manchester.

Their lead would be short lived however, in fact very short lived. Fox wasn’t even done showing the replay of Manchester City’s goal when Zlatan Ibrahimovic equalized thanks to a horrific City blunder.

Things were back level and with PSG continuing to control the flow of play it seemed like it was only a matter of time before the Parisians would finally take the lead. Their breakthrough came in the 59th minute when Adrien Rabiot hammered home a rebound after Edison Cavani’s header hit off the post.

PSG continued to put pressure on City, making it look like City would be lucky if they could only be 2-1 down when they went back to Manchester. But football is a funny sport and despite the early warning about what careless defending can do to you, PSG continued to be careless at the back. This led to Manchester City’s Brazilian holding midfielder Fernandinho pouncing on the error to equalize for City. Even bigger for the lone English club left in the competition, the goal gives them two away goals to take with them to the second leg. Something that could prove to be very valuable next week.

Heading into the tie no one was giving Manchester City a fighters chance to advance to the semi-final. However they now return to Manchester all even, but they have two vital away goals. It’s safe to say anything can happen when these two teams get back together next Tuesday.

Despite the unexpectedness of a back and forth match in Paris, the biggest shock of the day came from Germany. VFL Wolfsburg, who sit eight in the Bundesliga and had gone winless in their last three league matches, were widely considered the weakest team left in the Champions League. Now they would have to go up against a Real Madrid side that had won six in a row and was coming off a win against Barcelona this past weekend.

If few people thought Manchester City had a chance against PSG, even fewer thought Wolfsburg stood any chance against Real Madrid.

But Wolfsburg came out like a team with nothing to lose. They attacked Real Madrid and looked to exploit the fact that Real Madrid have been very shaky away from home under manager Zinedine Zidane.

Wolfsburg put pressure on the Madrid defense right from the start, making the Spanish giants back four look very uncomfortable. Not long into the match, the Germans won a penalty that Ricardo Rodriguez calmly slotted home. Seven minutes later, Max Arnold doubled their lead.

Real Madrid seemed to find their game in the second half, but were unable to find a breakthrough with the closest they came from a Cristiano Ronaldo chance resulting in a fantastic save from Wolfsburg keeper Diego Benaglio.

The German’s will now take a 2-0 lead to the Bernabau next week where anything can happen. Next Tuesday looks like it will be a lot of fun.

About Pauly Kwestel

Pauly is a Producer for WFAN in New York and the CBS Sports Radio Network. He has been writing about the beautiful game since 2010 and can be followed on twitter @pkwestelWFAN