Paris Saint-Germain had a bit of an off day against Manchester City, and consequently let the visitors help themselves to two away goals. It’s advantage City heading back to the Etihad, although both teams look capable of both scoring and leaking goals.
There was controversy early on, with PSG asking for two penalties in quick succession. The second was given by the referee, although it arguably shouldn’t have been – in fact David Luiz could have been sent off for diving as a second bookable offence.
A poor touch from Bacary Sagna gifted Luiz the ball in the area, and the Frenchman rather clumsily tried to win it back. The former Chelsea defender went down under the challenge, but the replay showed that he’d stuck his leg out looking for it and began diving to the floor long before any contact was made.
The injustice was prevented slightly as Joe Hart managed to save Zlatan Ibrahiovic’s shot, but City were still furious with the decision.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side then managed to score themselves, albeit slightly against the run of play. A quick counter saw the ball fall to Kevin de Bruyne, and the Belgian goal machine lashed it into the back of the net. It was some pretty poor defending from David Luiz and some equally poor goalkeeping from Kevin Trapp, but some excellent play by de Bruyne.
After working hard to get an unlikely lead though, a moment of madness saw them throw it away. Joe Hart played an ill advised pass out from the back to Fernando, who took a shocking first touch and made the equally poor decision to turn inside rather than playing it back to Hart of spreading it out wide. Ibrahimovic pounced on the loose ball and was able to slot it into the open net. 1-1.
PSG took the lead for the first time in the second half, with Edinson Cavani heading powerfully towards goal from a corner. Hart made the save, but could only parry into the path of Adrien Rabiot, who tapped it in to make it 2-1. There were shades of offside from Ibrahimovic, who attacked Cavani’s header and arguably put off Hart. It was a difficult one to spot though, and you can hardly blame the linesman for missing it.
The French champions certainly looked the stronger of the two sides, and Manchester City’s poor defense looked easily exploitable. It was PSG that made the next costly mistake though, with poor positioning from Serge Aurier and then a couple of unlucky deflections allowing Fernandinho to scramble the ball past Trapp. 2-2.
City will certainly be the happier of the two sides, with two away goals giving them a real advantage heading into the second leg.
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They could progress next week with a goalless draw, or even 1-1. The onus will be on PSG to attack, so City will be able to sit back and counter. It’s hard to see PSG not scoring next week though, so City may need to push for a goal or two themselves.