Leipzig vs PSG

Paris Saint-Germain suffered yet another group stage loss in the UEFA Champions League to RB Leipzig amidst an unfortunate start to the season.

Two months on from their Semifinal showdown in Lisbon which PSG won with a commanding 3-0 scoreline. Leipzig overpowered their opponents after crashing to a 5-0 defeat at Old Trafford last week

Without Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Mauro Icardi, Marco Veratti, Juan Bernat, and Julian Draxler to injuries, PSG were short of optimism going to Germany.

It was yet another come-from-behind win in this post-pandemic era. However, PSG should have been out of sight after going ahead early.

Betway Nigeria

Once Ángel Di María missed a penalty to double his and the team’s tally, PSG conceded to German opposition by one of their ex-players – as in the Final – as Christopher Nkunku leveled the scores. 

Angel Di Maria

Indiscipline crept in as Idrissa Gueye got a second yellow to kill hopes of a comeback before Presnel Kimpembe also saw red late on.

Julian Naglesmann’s men had more shots (12 to eight) and efforts on target (five to two) than their visitors. PSG endured a slow start to the season with two defeats but they have recovered with seven straight domestic wins since.

In Europe, they have only three points from three games having lost to Manchester United on Matchday one, their underwhelming efforts have complicated the group as United remain top despite defeat to bottom side İstanbul Başakşehir, who are level with Paris. 

Since the highs of their first Champions League Final, PSG have struggled for consistency due to injuries to key players and Covid-19 quarantine. However, some of that is down to the questionable discipline of the squad, some of whom broke health guidelines prior to the mini-outbreak in the squad at the start of the season.

Disagreements regarding off-days caused some friction between Sporting Director Leonardo and Tuchel in September. The club’s questionable transfer business over the summer was also duly criticised by Tuchel.

Thomas Tuchel

Indeed, The Parisiens have weakened in quality as Thomas Meunier, Captain Thiago Silva, and record goalscorer Edinson Cavani all left for free. Moise Kean, Rafinha Alcântara, Danilo Pereira, and Alessandro Florenzi were signed, hardly quality replacements or reinforcements after going close so in August. They also failed to complete a deal for Dele Alli.

Since his 2018 appointment, Tuchel instilled concentration and tactical dynamism on a star-studded squad that had been accused of bottling on the big occasion in Europe.

In 2019/20, they were aided greatly by the post-pandemic schedule which afforded them the whole lockdown period to prepare for a one-off mini-tournament. Nevertheless, they showed an incredible focus and determination all the way to a 1-0 defeat to Bayern Munich in the final.

In only the Club’s 50th anniversary season, the feeling was they would be back. 

Their hopes are all over the place at the moment, critically needing all their stars on the pitch. Otherwise they run a real risk of falling to the Europa League.

Tuchel is of course in a bullish mood, telling reporters after the match.

“We can accept that it does not change my work with the team and the staff. It’s the life of a coach in Paris, it’s never enough. No problem for me. There are difficult phases in sport.

“Our expectation is not to win each game, we also know what state we are in each game. Today, it was possible to win, it was possible to draw in the same match.

“We will try again and if we win at the Parc des Princes the situation will be totally reversed.”

Time will tell for Thomas Tuchel, as the setbacks will not save him his job. A row with the hierarchy only has one winner when results stay awry.


Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin

Chief Editor of the Football Castle, Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin is a football junkie and writer of the beautiful game.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Blog Meets Brand