Thursday, October 1, 2020

Paris Saint-Germain 0-1 Marseille: Thauvin settles frantic Classique as Neymar sees red

SoccerNews in Ligue 1 13 Sep 2020

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Paris Saint-Germain’s poor start to their Ligue 1 campaign continued as they fell to a 1-0 home defeat against Marseille in a foul-tempered Classique in which five players, including Neymar, were sent off late on.

Having been without seven first-team stars for Thursday’s loss to Lens, Thomas Tuchel was able to welcome four of his regulars back into the fold on Sunday, yet it was Andre Villas-Boas’ side – who lost 4-0 in the corresponding fixture last season – that claimed the points at Parc des Princes, where a limited number of fans were allowed in attendance.

Florian Thauvin’s 31st-minute volley settled the encounter, which ended in ridiculous scenes as referee Jerome Brisard dished out red cards like confetti following a stoppage-time brawl.

Neymar, who earlier missed a golden chance, was among them, with the forward receiving his marching orders for hitting Alvaro, who he seemingly accused of racism when speaking to the fourth official as he left the field.

Leandro Paredes reacted violently to a foul from countryman Dario Benedetto, with both Argentinians dismissed along with Layvin Kurzawa and Jordan Amavi for their parts in the ensuing fracas.

Steve Mandanda made a spectacular save from Marco Verratti early on, and the tone for the match was set when Neymar and Dimitri Payet – who retweeted a tweet mocking PSG following their defeat at Lens – were booked for their involvement in a fracas.

Payet had the final word in that duel, though, dropping a precise free-kick over the top of PSG’s defence – Thauvin on hand to finish brilliantly on the volley, with the goal standing after a VAR check for offside.

Mandanda twice made superb saves as PSG piled on the pressure after the restart, denying Pablo Sarabia and Neymar.

PSG thought they had equalised when Gueye slipped in Angel Di Maria, only for the offside flag to cut short their celebrations.

Benedetto saw an effort ruled out for a marginal offside at the other end, but Marseille held firm to end a dreadful run against their rivals – Neymar’s miss from two yards out summing up a frustrating night for PSG.

Yet there was to be significant drama in stoppage time, as Benedetto provoked Parades, with both players receiving their second yellow cards.

Amavi and Kurzawa were also dismissed as the teams clashed on the field, with Brisard then consulting VAR and having little option but to dismiss Neymar for a punch in an improbably ugly finale.

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