PSG suffered defeat for the first time this season at the hands of an inspired Strasbourg side on Saturday afternoon.
Despite dominating, the defeat comes directly before the heavyweight clash with Bayern Munich to decide their fate in the Champions League on Tuesday. The visitors made a lacklustre start without the likes of Cavani, Verratti, and Thiago Silva in the starting eleven and conceded a free header to Strasbourg’s Nuno Da Costa. Areola could have done better in goal but the marking from the PSG defensive line was non-existent.
Mbappe, Di Maria and Draxler all saw their efforts drift wide of the post until the former finished off a great following team move which ended in Rabiot picking out Mbappe four yards out to tap it in and make it all level going into half time. This was despite the best efforts of Javier Pastore who made an impression on the woodwork with a unlucky turn and shot inside the area.
The second half continued in the same manner. Pastore failed to finish straight after the restart; Mbappe couldn’t add to his previous strike and it was the hosts who showed the current league leaders how it’s done. Stéphane Bakhoken latched on to a through ball and finished professionally into the roof of Areola’s goal.
Chances continued to fall the Parisiens way through Kimpembe, Mbappe and Neymar, and even second half subs Cavani and Lo Celso couldn’t find a way past the hosts resilient defence.
PSG boss Unai Emery claimed he was pleased with his teams efforts in Sttrasbourg but in the end PSG were punished for several missed chances. Emery must pick his side up for the game at the Allianz on Tuesday and reflect on his tactical change for future reference.
Areola (4) Dani Alves (4) Marquinhos (4) Kimpembe (4) Berchiche (4) Rabiot (6) Draxler (4) Pastore (5) Di Maria (3) Mbappe (6) Neymar (5)
Man of the Match – Kylian Mbappe
The 18 year old was given the central role in Cavani’s absence and despite being on the wrong side of the score line, Kylian Mbappe was the most inspirational player for the capital club and was unfortunate not to end up with at least another goal by his name at the final whistle.
On the other side, Di Maria received a rating of 3/10 by L’Equipe. He failed to create chances for his teammates and missed any that came his way. The Argentinian has had a hard time since the arrival of Neymar and Mbappe in Paris and performances like that are not going to help him get back into the team.
PSG travel to Germany to face Bayern Munich in the deciding game in Group B. Due to head to head, PSG must avoid a loss of more than four goals if they wish to top the group after what has been a perfect start to this years competition.