PSG break through Champions League
After years of failing to live up to their bills in Europe, Paris Saint-Germain are 90 minutes away from the Champions League final thanks to their spectacular win over Atalanta on Wednesday, and coach Thomas Tuchel now knows that “anything is possible” for his team.
Paris Saint-Germain were on the verge of a disappointing Champions League exit, trailing 1-0 at Atalanta in the 90th minute in Lisbon, where all the finals take place after the long Coronavirus lockout.
But Mario Pasalic’s goal for the Italians in the 27th minute was finally canceled by Marquinhos, who was quick to equalize in the dying moments.
Then, after three minutes of added time, Kylian Mbappe teamed up with substitute teammate Eric Chubu Moting to convert the winning goal.
“The goals came too late but we deserved to win. We didn’t stop believing or attacking,” said Tuchel, whose side will face Atlético Madrid or RB Leipzig in the semi-final, la first of the club since 1995.
“The players who came off the bench made a huge impact. We deserved it, we took our chances.”
The money their Qatari owners spent on the French champions increased the pressure on Paris Saint-Germain to hand the ball over to them, and the loss to Atalanta has reportedly drawn further criticism for the club, including the recent record in such matches was poor.
After all, the entire Atalanta salary bill is believed to be equal to what Paris Saint-Germain pay Neymar annually (around 36 million euros, or $ 42.5 million).
He has missed crucial Champions League games in the past two seasons due to injuries, Neymar was excellent here and he never gave up. He drew a tie and played the winner.
The world’s most expensive player said: “Coming home has never crossed my mind.”
Mbappe was only fit enough to play in the final half hour, after a period of shelving with an ankle injury, but his speed down the left flank put Atalanta on the back foot in phases finals and set the goal of victory.
– Chubu Moting leaves its mark –
Paris Saint-Germain are hoping the French star can start the semi-final game next Tuesday, but thanks to Choupo-Moting, they’re there at all.
“We have already won four titles this season but the most important is this,” said the Cameroon striker.
It seems ironic that Paris Saint-Germain – the fifth richest team in the world according to Deloitte football league this year – had to rely on a free transfer from Stoke City to take them to the Champions League semi-finals for the first time since Qatar. Acquisition in 2011.
They’ve been out for the last 16 years of the past three years, but Chubu Moting’s goal saw them break through the glass ceiling on the same day Paris Saint-Germain celebrated their 50th anniversary.
From Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Ronaldinho, great players have emerged for the club in their relatively short history, although Chubu Moting has not left a big footprint in the two seasons in Paris.
He had never scored in the Champions League and was probably best known for missing an open goal while standing on the line in a game against Strasbourg.
In fact, he wasn’t even playing in this game under various circumstances.
Choupo-Moting’s contract expired in June, but he agreed to stay two months to play a role in ‘Final Eight’ after the withdrawal of Edinson Cavani – Paris Saint-Germain’s all-time top scorer, whose contract had also expired -.
The 31-year-old therefore came to replace the ineffective Mauro Icardi in the finals. He would at best have a small role to play in the semi-finals.
Mbappe may be ready to start by then and Angel Di Maria will be back from suspension, although Marco Verratti is again injured.
“There is a big difference between playing with or without Kilian,” Tuchel said.
“It’s clear, and it’s the same with Marco and Angel. We now have six days for Killian to come back to his best.”
“I’m not sure about Marco, but we are in the golden box, anything is possible.”
reported by yahoo