Thursday, December 9, 2021

Pochettino bemoans lack of game management after PSG draw in Leipzig

SoccerNews in Ligue 1 4 Nov 2021

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Paris Saint-Germain head coach Mauricio Pochettino was left frustrated after his side conceded a stoppage-time penalty to drop two points in a 2-2 draw at RB Leipzig that saw them lose top spot in Champions League Group A.

PSG went a goal down early on after former player Christopher Nkunku headed in a cross from Andre Silva, and would have been further behind just 12 minutes in had Gianluigi Donnarumma not saved a penalty from the latter after the Portugal forward was tripped in the box by Danilo on Wednesday.

Georginio Wijnaldum bagged his first two goals for PSG since joining from Liverpool in the off-season to give his team a half-time lead, but Pochettino’s men could not put the game to bed and were fortunate to still be ahead by the time Presnel Kimpembe gave away another penalty, which Dominik Szoboszlai converted in the 92nd minute midweek.

“We saw how facing a team performing well can cause us problems,” Pochettino told RMC Sport. “It’s our fault that we messed up the start of the match. It’s true that we didn’t start well.

“In the second half, we controlled the game better. The stats show that we have to do better in terms of possession.

“Most of all we have to manage the game better against teams who can play on the counter like Leipzig. You have to be able to do it all.”

When asked how he felt about losing first place in the group to Premier League champions Manchester City, the former Tottenham boss added “It changes nothing. We need to have the desire to go to Manchester to qualify.”

PSG are now winless in their last three away games in the Champions League (D2 L1), their worst such run on the road since November 2018 (four on the spin).

Wijnaldum’s goals for PSG were his first in 276 days since the end of January for Liverpool. It was also the Dutchman’s first Champions League brace since May 2019 in the semi-finals against Barcelona.

“We created a lot of opportunities but also gave a few away and that’s why they stayed in the game,” RMC Sport. “At times we made it easy for them.

“I work hard every day and I’m getting to know my team-mates better. Let’s hope I can continue this form.”

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