Thursday, January 27, 2022

Feignies-Aulnoye 0-3 Paris Saint-Germain: Mbappe stars in Coupe de France cruise past minnows

SoccerNews in Ligue 1 19 Dec 2021

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Kylian Mbappe scored twice as Paris Saint-Germain cruised to a 3-0 win over minnows Feignies-Aulnoye in Sunday’s Coupe de France round-of-64 clash

PSG never looked in danger of suffering an upset against their fifth-tier opponents, and they went 2-0 up after 30 minutes through penalties from Mbappe and Mauro Icardi.

Former Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos was withdrawn at the interval on just his second appearance for the Parisians, perhaps not the best sign as he continues his recovery from injury, before Mbappe added a third goal early in the second period.

The Ligue 1 leaders, who have lifted the trophy in six of the last seven seasons, continued to create chances but ultimately fell short of adding gloss to the scoreline.

PSG went ahead in the 16th minute through Mbappe’s penalty after the France international had been brought down inside the area by Ibrahima Diedhiou.

Icardi, who had earlier seen an effort ruled out for offside, inexplicably struck the post from close range midway through the first half, although he made amends on the half-hour mark, stroking home from the spot after Mbappe had been fouled by Gary Gerard Marigard.

Mbappe blazed wide when clean through as PSG failed to add to their tally before the interval, despite taking a whopping 20 shots in the first half.

The 22-year-old grabbed his second in the 51st minute, slotting home Colin Dagba’s cut-back from the right.

PSG teenager Ismael Gharbi was denied a first professional goal by substitute goalkeeper Jordan Fernand inside the final 20 minutes as PSG booked their place in the next round with the minimum of fuss.

What does it mean? No complacency from Pochettino’s men

By naming the likes of Mbappe, Icardi and Marco Verratti in his starting XI, Mauricio Pochettino made it clear he was not taking PSG’s significantly less illustrious opponents lightly.

The one concern from an otherwise routine affair was the withdrawal of Ramos at the interval. It has been a hugely disrupted start to life in France for the former Los Blancos star, and it will be hoped any new setback does not keep him out for long.

Mbappe’s constant threat

Unsurprisingly, Mbappe was too hot to handle for Feignies-Aulnoye’s defence. The World Cup winner won both penalties, the first of which he converted, and he scored a second goal in a display brimming with his usual blend of electric pace and skill.

Ebimbe squanders chance to shine

Eric Ebimbe rarely looked like opening his account for PSG during a disappointing showing. The 21-year-old, who was replaced in the 64th minute by Gharbi, had just a single shot on target and failed to play a key pass in a display that will surely be considered a missed opportunity.

What’s next?

Runaway Ligue 1 leaders PSG play their last game of 2021 on Wednesday when they travel to Lorient.

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