Paris Saint Germain reached the UEFA Champions League semi-finals for the second consecutive season on Tuesday evening despite a 1-0 defeat to holders Bayern Munich at the Parc des Princes.
Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting scored the only goal of the game in the first half as he netted against his former side for the second game in a row from close range. However, due to the hosts’ 3-2 victory in Germany last week, PSG progressed on away goals.
Here are three things we learned from the match:
Close but not enough for Bayern as PSG earn revenge
The task coming into this game was certainly clear for Bayern Munich; win the game by at least two goals and stop PSG from scoring to progress to the Champions League semi-finals. Hansi Flick’s men certainly tried their hardest to get there. In fact, they turned in an extremely disciplined performance to keep the likes of Kylian Mbappe and Neymar off of the scoresheet. In the end though, their one goal was not enough to get through to the next round.
It was also not enough to deny PSG revenge for their 1-0 defeat in the final last season. The Parisians now head into a semi-final meeting against either Borussia Dortmund or Manchester City having overcome the hurdle that seemed to fell them so habitually in the past. They can now be backed at a price of 4/1 with Betfair to go one better and win the UEFA Champions League for the first time this season.
In order to book their progression, it was crucial that the Parisians halted Bayern’s incredible rate of scoring. Whilst they did not manage to do that entirely, with Choupo-Moting eventually getting himself on the scoresheet shortly before the break, the PSG defence certainly did their upmost to deny the German champions.
A huge reason behind that defensive solidarity and stubbornness was Portuguese midfielder Danilo Pereira. Deployed in an unfamiliar position at the heart of his side’s defence due to a multitude of injuries, the former FC Porto man turned in a hugely dominant performance, particularly in the first-half.
He was a constant source of frustration for the visitors as he almost seem magnetised towards trouble. He produced two interceptions, whilst also contributing a match-high eight clearances. Danilo was certainly a huge reason behind PSG reaching the semi-finals.
Uncomfortable for PSG
Whilst Mauricio Pochettino’s men will of course be delighted to have progressed to the last four of the competition for the second season in a row, they certainly made the game less comfortable for themselves than it needed to be.
The French giants had a multitude of chances to add to the one-goal lead they racked up at the Allianz Arena. Neymar twice hit the woodwork in the French capital, whilst the otherwise lethal Kylian Mbappe also spurned a number of presentable chances. Even the goal he did score in the second-half was ruled out for him being marginally offside. That lack of composure in front of goal even appeared to spread to the substitutes as Moise Kean also blazed a late chance high over the Bayern Munich goal.
In the end, PSG did not need to score to make sure of their semi-final place but a goal would certainly have made the team and indeed supporters breathe a little easier.
Paris Saint Germain: Navas (7); Diallo (7) (Bakker (7), 58′), Dagba (7), Pereira (8), Kimpembe (7); Gueye (7), Paredes (7), Draxler (6) (Kean (6), 73′); Neymar (7), Di Maria (7) (Herrera (N/A), 88′), Mbappe (7).
Bayern Munich: Neuer (7); Pavard (6), Boateng (7), Alaba (7), Hernandez (7), Davies (6) (Musiala (6), 71′); Kimmich (6), Muller (6); Coman (6), Sane (5), Choupo-Moting (7) (Martinez (N/A), 85′).
Goals: Choupo-Moting (40′)
Referee: Daniele Orsato
Yellow Cards: Alaba(52′), Dagba (55′), Muller (68′), Herrera (90′)
Red Cards: N/A
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!