Paris Saint Germain said goodbye to the Champions League in the semi-finals and faces a stormy year. Ligue 1 is not even guaranteed and the worst is already feared. He fell clearly, before a better City and left a worrying message: Neither with Neymar and Mbappé did he measure up to 180 minutes. The Frenchman did not play due to physical discomfort, although all the lights were on his person after it became clear that it would close another season without the maximum continental competition. The Brazilian tried, especially in the first half, but he didn't have his best day either. Neither has signed the renewal and the deletion does not help them close the deal. Meanwhile, Madrid, Barcelona and company knock on the door. Disappointments never help swear allegiance …
Without Mbappé, Pochettino had to bet on another formula, with Neymar on the left wing and Icardi as an offensive reference. Undoubtedly, a difficult setback for a team that already had a difficult time coming from 1-2 in the first leg. But the stripes of Ney, leader of this team despite the offensive constellation, promised to give war to the City. Five minutes later he gave the first warning with a shot repelled by the rear. But the day was hiding news that would not be easy to face.
The hail that fell on the Etihad was their first enemy. The grass was in bad shape. It was difficult to drive the ball and send accurate passes. Two of Neymar's main qualities, almost neutralized. Not for that reason he stopped trying and the penalty whistled by Zinchenko would put the first tick in the locker. Everything went wrong when the VAR showed that, indeed, the ball had hit the shoulder and not the limb and when Mahrez opened the scoring at ten minutes.
Neymar lowered his head, but soon raised it again. Tired of driving. PSG was the Brazilian. He received in the opposite field, he associated, he moved the ball, he received fouls … But he was missing his main partner and Di Maria was more imprecise than usual. Even so, the Argentine, invented by Neymar, put a magnificent ball on Marquinhos. Ball to the crossbar.
The '10' was still in command and perhaps Verratti was the only one who followed him. Icardi no, with hardly any unchecks and little support in preparation in three quarters of the field. Soon, PSG lost the fervor of the opening minutes and the legs began to weigh. This is how Neymar saw it, who went from contriving near Ederson to having to step on his own area so that his team passed midfield.
While he was trying, his team was unraveling and more the cameras focused on Mbappé, who, of course, should not be in a position to not show a sign of entering the most important day of the year. At halftime, an erratic Neymar had to think of alternatives and that the operators fix the damaged Etihad lawn.
Without Mbappé, the PSG falls
PSG had no choice but to hold on to their chances and turn on the rival goal. But Pochettino had to find the key. Did not because City played more, suffocated more at the start and did not let Neymar receive between the lines. It was not until 60 'when the entries of Kean and Draxler gave a new air to the Brazilian star, in a more centered position. Was it enough?
The new two hadn't even been on the field for a minute when City sentenced the tie with another Mahrez target. If there was any doubt, I had no longer felt to force Mbappé. Neymar had to try, but three goals after barely generating against Ederson … And with the expulsion of Di María … Mission impossible. One more season, Neymar and Mbappé say goodbye to the Champions League without lifting the trophy. The great objective of the project falls again and who knows if its stars will have tired of so much disappointment. Was it your last match with the Parisian jersey in Europe?
Infographics via SofaScore.