United can inflict more Champions League pain on PSG

Tanya Simon
February 13, 2019

After a drab first half, in which both sides created very little, Presnel Kimpembe opened the scoring in the 53rd minute with a close-range volley from an Angel Di Maria corner.

Only an improbable comeback would see United knock PSG out but Mbappe will not be counting on a place in the last eight until the job is done.

United was forced to adapt, too, after losing Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial to injury for the second half. "I am happy with what I did with [Manchester United midfielder Paul] Pogba, but I am still focused on our collective win".

Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon feels that there is more to come from PSG if they can finish United off in the second leg.

Some of United's recent flawed decision-making was illustrated by the performance of Alexis Sanchez, a hugely expensive liability who might as well have stayed in his seat among the substitutes for all the good he did after coming on just before half-time. "When he plays, he needs to find himself because we know there's a quality player there".

Solskjaer is capable of transforming the fortunes of players - just look at Pogba.

"We're missing Antonio [Valencia] and Matteo [Darmian] - they're the two that are not available", the Man Utd official website quote him as saying.

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The loss was the first under caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in his 12th match since replacing Jose Mourinho and also the heaviest-ever home defeat for United in Europe, having previously only been beaten by one-goal margins.

In the night's other last-16 game, teenager Nicolo Zaniolo scored twice to lead Roma to a 2-1 victory.

Indeed, Solskjaer was the first to admit before the match that Old Trafford had always been starved of nights like these - the last one coming against Real Madrid back in Sir Alex's final year in charge.

They started out as Neymar's Paris Saint-Germain, then they became that of Neymar, Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe but what became clear at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening is that this PSG team is Mbappe's. "It's not going to be a season-defining one for us".

The Norwegian had won 10 of his 11 games in charge of United before their defeat against PSG. "I think that it is over at 3-0".

"French football must go as far as possible in the Champions League".

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