Tuesday, October 24, 2017

We all make mistakes – Matuidi backs under-fire PSG goalkeeper Areola

SoccerNews in Ligue 1 8 Feb 2017

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Blaise Matuidi sprung to the defence of Alphonse Areola after the Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper’s error almost cost his team victory against Lille on Tuesday.

Unai Emery’s men were able to keep up the pressure on Ligue 1 leaders Monaco with a 2-1 win over Lille, thanks to a controversial late winner from Lucas Moura.

The Brazilian’s strike, which came from an offside position, bailed out Areola, whose heavy touch and botched clearance from a back-pass gifted Nicolas de Preville an equaliser four minutes from time.

It meant the 23-year-old did little to press his claims for retaining the number one spot, with Kevin Trapp set to recover from a thigh injury to face Barcelona in the Champions League next week, but France midfielder Matuidi was sympathetic towards his plight.

“We all make mistakes,” he told reporters. “He is a young player. He has all of our trust and is a great goalkeeper.

“Sometimes we may be the unloved, then the hero the next day.”

Lille midfielder Julian Palmieri was left aggrieved by the decision for Lucas’ winner and claimed referee Francois Letexier apologised on his colleague’s behalf at full-time.

“We know that the goal is not valid,” he told reporters. “I saw Lucas’ eyes when he scored – he is surprised himself the goal is allowed.

“He is not [offside by] fifty centimetres, but one metre. He is offside for all of the action.

“And the worst is that the referee apologises after whistling at the end of the game. It does not give us the point we hoped for or take away our frustration.”

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