PSG 1-2 Man City, result, goals, summary: 2021 Champions League semi-final
PSG 1-2 Man City: how it happened
Mahrez: Our Man of the Match
A quick check of the SofaScore stats adds the science to what we watched in that second half: Riyad Mahrez was class.
De Bruyne and Foden also stood out, and a step up in performance from Rodri made a difference, but the Algerian's control and link up play will have given the PSG defenders nightmares.
PSG 1-2 Man City
Well, what a game! Where do I start?
PSG seemed to have complete control of this first leg as we went in at the break. A goal from Marquinhos on a quarter of an hour was the highlight but the French side were also the more dangerous and could have, maybe should have, added to that.
City offered much less than we were expecting. But we've seen enough games of football to know that things can change with the spin of a ball...and that's exactly what happened.
Guardiola clearly had a word over some orange cuts and the visitors came out with a more focused press in the second half.
It did, however, despite them looking much better, take a stroke of fortune to bring them level. An inswinging ball from De Bruyne missed everyone and found the net, a valuable away goal secured.
More good luck was to follow. With 20 minutes to go, a poor Mahrez free kick should have bounced back off the PSG wall, but as the players half jumped, a gap opened up and the ball flew straight through it and into the net. Keylor was furious.
As French frustration grew, their troubles did too, as Gueye saw red for a horrible challenge on Gündogan. They'll be happy just to have escaped from that with no more goals against...but have a huge task on their hands if they are to reach a second consecutive final.
Peep, peep, peeeep! The final whistle blows
Sloppy play from the home defenders hands De Bruyne a late chance to kill off the tie.
Pushing the ball in front of him into space, the Belgian strikes with his left foot but it's always rising.
That could be that for tonight.
PSG go long and have Mbappé chasing but Dias does brilliantly to show his shoulder was stronger, and the forward falls over in vain.
We'll have four added minutes
Neymar swings a free kick into the City area following a naughty foul from Rodri, but the defence come out on top.
The youngster picks up the ball just inside his own half and glides through the close attention of a number of PSG bodies.
As he steps into the PSG area he pokes a strike with intent but a stumble means it's not the cleanest and too close to Keylor.
De Bruyne into the book for a silly and unnecessary challenge.
PSG players claim it should be red, Brych waves them away.
PSG fans crossing their fingers that their stars can pull something else out of these final few minutes and Mbappé almost does.
A delicious turn away from three covering players gives him a chance to play in Neymar but the Frenchman can't find the gap. Will they have another?
Mahrez just wide
If there's one team in the world you don't want to be a man down against then it could be Guardiola's.
After some keep ball, the Algerian cuts in on his left foot and drills low but jus outside the near post.
Another change for the hosts. Herrera on for Paredes, as fresh legs needed to stop City opening them up too easily.
First Mahrez, then Silva, City players are looking to run at this dejected PSG backline.
Keylor eventually calms it down by grabbing a low cross.
Pochettino doesn't want to lose the entire semi-final tonight so is shoring things up with Danilo on for Di Maria.
RED CARD: Gueye
After what had looked to be an excellent night developing for the French side it's now all unravelling.
Two goals lost, both avoidable, and now heads going all over. First Neymar and now Gueye with a horrible challenge on Gündogan who's down injured.
Foden gets the ball out of his feet and strikes at goal - but it's too close to Navas, who gratefully grabs hold. If PSG aren't careful, City could go on and leave this tie half-won here.
Neymar is the second PSG player to go into the book after catching Dias with a late lunge.
Mahrez takes... and his strike goes through the PSG wall and in past Navas! 2-1 to City!
Having been second best in the first half, the visitors have been on top since the break and have turned the scoreboard on its head in Paris!
Foden is brought down on the edge of the area by Paredes, who is booked - more than for the foul, the yellow card seems to be because he kicked the ball away in reaction to the decision.
It's a very dangerous free-kick for City...
GOAL: De Bruyne
Unbelievable! The Belgian curls an inswinging ball into the danger zone from deep on the left looking for the head of a teammate.
No one reaches it but it continues into the far corner, Keylor just watching on helplessly.
Zinchenko takes the place of Cancelo
De Bruyne bicycle
What an effort from the City man who, near the penalty spot, attempts an overhead kick under pressure.
A decent connection made but it's just over Keylor's crossbar.
Well played, Ederson.
As City look to push on the fullbacks, Mbappé is being handed more space to run into with the ball over the top.
Just as it looks as though he's escaped all available defenders, the Brazilian keeper sweeps up sharply. Vital cover.
The resultant corner is met at the near post by Di Maria but he guides it well over.
Verratti very very close
It's all about Mbappé who sprints away down the right inside channel but is faced up as he gets to the byline. A dropped shoulder or three opens enough space to fire across goal and his midfield support throws a foot towards it.
The Argentine needed a couple of shoe sizes bigger.
How both sides have conceded goals this season (before tonight)
CIty control on the edge of the PSG area is lost and Di Maria looks to escape a couple of challenges and counter. The foot in from De Bruyne though takes him over. Free kick and a breather.
Mbappé looks to burst clear but is matched in pace by Kyle Walker who uses his strength to win the ball back. Great play from the England man.
Let's hope we see those two chase a long ball into space later!
More pressure from City, De Bruyne trying to fire in a low cross from the right side of the 18-yard box but it's blocked and then off the midfielder for a goal kick.
Better pressing game from the visitors seems clear.
The dead ball is indeed swing into the crowd by the Belgian but its met first by a dark blue shirt and cleared away.
City work the ball deep into PSG's left back zone and Mahrez is fouled with a clumsy nudge into the back. De Bruyne delivery territory.
Peep! We're off...
The players are heading back out...
Let's have a quick look at the goal scorer's first half in detail.
Marquinhos was assured in his defensive role throughout but, mainly due to City's attacks being pushed wide or killed off ahead of him, he wasn't called into action too often. Leadership and organisation...oh, and a goal!
While PSG have been impressive for most of the first 45 minutes, Man City have been short of their own high standards.
Marquinhos' perfectly timed header is the difference between the sides on the scoreboard but the threat carried by PSG's front three has been notable. The visitors, on the other hand, have had a couple of sights at goal but haven't looked anywhere near as dangerous as we've come to expect.
Will Guardiola consider introducing a recognised striker? Maybe he'll look for more support from the wingbacks. Pochettino will likely ask for more of the same.
Peeep! Whistle blows for half-time
Two minutes added time to be had.
Much better from City this time as the ball is worked across the opposing penalty area to Foden who shifts it slightly before letting rip.
The power is there but it's too close to Navas who blocks away.
As the sky blue shirts gather around the PSG area, Cancelo decides he knows best and goes for goal himself.
Keylor can just about see it as it flies high over the bar.
Neymar is down again, apparently hurt although I'm not buying it this time either. What do they say about crying wolf?
De Bruyne sends in a good looking corner but Keylor is not leaving it to chance, sprinting from his line to double-punch clear.
Neymar collects and, along with Di Maria, attempts to hit quickly on the counter. It's well defended.
The attack from Guardiola's side, made up of creative midfielders is not showing its teeth thus far.
More support in the wide areas needed.
Di Maria with some twinkle toes opens up the right-hand side for PSG.
As the play develops, and support arrives, the final pass to Mbappé inside the box is a just out of his reach and Ederson gathers gratefully.
Chance for City almost appears as Foden picks up a loose ball on the left, dinks it to the back post where Mahrez heads goalwards.
Paredes' foot is high enough but deemed safe to clear in front of his own line.
When Mbappé is about to get away, defenders tend to do what they can to stop him. And it often ends in a card.
Some movement forward from the English side now but it ends with De Bruyne's cross being plucked out of the air by Keylor. More guile needed.
Another attempt from a corner, City struggling to deal with them, as Paredes meets Neymar's delivery but then watches his effort fly just wide.
A wicked Di Maria corner is met by the firm punch of Ederson. More pressure from the hosts.
Florenzi sends in a decent ball into the City area and some less than convincing defending almost opens them up, before a loose pass kills any threat.
Neymar goes flying through the air spectacularly after a mazy dribble attempt is stopped in its tracks. The tackle, however, was nothing of the sort, the Brazilian just hanging a leg out as he ran.
Mahrez's corner is cleared away without too much problem and PSG look to build some possession of their own.
It never looked like producing a realistic effort at goal as the cross from wide on the left flew high past the back post, but an extended leg from Bernando Silva somehow redirected it.
Keylor was there to block away for a corner.
We've seen City go behind before and turn things around so they'll not be overly concerned by the early setback.
What may worry them more are the number of chances that PSG have already managed to create, and the counter is likely to be even more dangerous as City push on for a leveller.
It was one of the main routes to goal I mentioned in the build-up. Corner in from the right and the Brazilian rises highest to glance it home.
Simple but effective.
The recycled ball is causing City some problems and potential chances end up with Neymar having a true one.
His cut inside and strike force the visiting keeper to touch it over the bar. PSG looking the most likely of opening the scoring just now.
Di Maria now running down the left wing, his familiar jinking style and cross wins the home side a corner.
Walker is fine to carry on.
Pop, pop, pop goes the ball as Guardiola's men have a period of control in the middle of the park.
Then Kyle Walker decides to take it on and sprints through the centre of the pitch where Paredes tackles him brilliantly. The English defender then bites back to get the ball and seems to injure himself.
Gundogan goes long for Mahrez who was carefully holding the line, but it's well overhit and runs away to the PSG keeper.
There was plenty of grass for the Algerian to run into there, the defenders will have to be careful about the movement of the City front men.
First threat from the Premier League side as Mahrez tries to slip in De Bruyne but excellent covering prevent the Belgian getting to it, and keep Keylor from having to get involved.
The visitors will expect to have the bulk of the possession, which could work for their hosts, and de Bruyne and Foden look to make something happen deep on the left.
An excellent interception allows PSG to break at speed and Neymar gets the first shot at goal of the game. Under pressure it's straight at Ederson who bends down to collect.
PSG, kicking right to left as I look on, start us off.
Some early touches round the backline eventually see the ball worked out to Neymar wide on the left. Good pressure forces it out for a throw to City.
Peeeep! We're underway...
- 31 Ederson Moraes
- 3 Rúben Dias
- 2 Walker
- 5 John Stones
- 27 Cancelo
- 8 Gündogan
- 16 Rodrigo
- 17 De Bruyne
- 26 Mahrez
- 47 Foden
- 20 Bernardo Silva
A reminder of the teams...
- 1 Keylor Navas
- 5 Marquinhos
- 24 Florenzi
- 3 Kimpembe
- 25 Mitchel Bakker
- 27 Idrissa Gueye
- 6 Verratti
- 8 Paredes
- 10 Neymar
- 7 Kylian Mbappe
- 11 Di María
The teams are heading out onto the pitch... there's plenty of excitement
UCL holy grail for CIty
Pep Guardiola has brought an exceptional level of football to the Premier League, arguably the greatest side in its recent pomp. But he knows, despite comments to the contrary, that this competition is a must for the club's ambitions.
There is no doubting his managerial class, but he's hoping this year is the one to end the debate.
Mbappé and Silva
Once teammates, they're trying to use their obvious talents to defeat each other tonight.
PSG vs Man City: UCL comparison
A quick comparison of the two sides in this season's Champions League shows City's relative dominance, although clearly they have played different opponents.
No losses thus far (PSG have lost three games) and seven clean sheets compared to two is an impressive run for Guardiola's machine.
Both sides have scored 21 goals in the 10 games, but City have only conceded three, while PSG have seen 10 against.
Goals, goals, goals
More stats from our chums at SofaScore give a quick summary of where the scoring threat is coming from.
As you can see, Mbappé's 37 net bulgers leads the way for the French side, while Gündogan has chipped in with a surprisingly high 16 in the absence of Kun Agüero for much of the season.
Despite Sterling not getting a starting place tonight, there is an embarrassment of creative riches available to Guardiola in the attacking positions.
De Bruyne, Mahrez, Foden and Bernardo Silva all appear to have a magic wand hidden under their shin guards - clearly that's against regulation kit - and at any moment can produce a defence-bamboozling pass or dribble.
They, however, didn't come cheaply, and PSG have had the checkbook out a few times too to stregthen their team.
We assess how the two financial powerhouses compare.
Man City team assessment
Possibly the biggest news from Pep is that Raheem Sterling has been left on the bench.
Clearly that's a very powerful weapon to have at your disposal if things are not going to plan, but after a starring role in the League Cup win over Spurs, many thought he'd be given the chance from the start.
Is it a pointer to him occasionally falling short in high pressure games?
PSG team assessment
All the expected big guns in for Pochettino.
Understandably, a lot of the attention will be focused on the damage that Neymar and Mbappé can do, but there is so much more to this PSG team.
I've already mentioned the threat that Di Maria carries, but then there's that of Marquinhos from set plays.
That said, I've seen plenty of the French champions this season and while they can fire very hot on their day, they can always blow rather cold too. Which one will we witness tonight?
Man City: starting XI
Ederson; Walker, Stones, Dias, Cancelo; Gündoğan, Rodri, De Bruyne; Mahrez, Bernardo Silva, Foden.
PSG: starting XI
Keylor Navas; Florenzi, Kimpembe, Marquinhos, Bakker; Leandro Paredes, Gueye; Di María, Verratti, Neymar; Mbappé.
The teams have been announced. Let's take a look at the home side first...
Foden looking to get his Phil
Pathetic and forced puns aside, City's young Englishman is taking the Premier League by storm and has the potential to make more headlines than some of the bigger names on show tonight.
Keep a close eye on him, whether you're an avid follower of the beautiful game or a PSG defender.
Di Maria can be Angelic at times
UEFA share a few highlights of the attacking player that is often outshone by his two teammates. But Pep will not be ignoring his threat...
One of the expected game-changers for this game is PSG's Kylian Mbappé and he has been heavily linked with a move away from the club over a number of months. And the story to another twist earlier today.
TNT Sports Brasil's highly regarded journalist Marcelo Bechler maintains that PSG have approached Lionel Messi's representatives and made an offer that 'cannot be refused" which would see the Argentine play in Paris on a two year deal with a third as an option.
Should the deal materialise, it could have a knock-on effect on a potential Mbappé move to Real Madrid. At present the French striker and Ligue 1 club remain embroiled in a complex negotiation process with limited headway being established.
The player's current deal in Paris expires in 2022 and chances are that the striker may simply not renew and let his contract run down and then make the move to the Spanish capital.
As we tend to do at AS English, we had a stab at picking the teams we thought Pochettino and Guardiola would go for.
Ahead of the actual XIs being named, check out who Rob Train went for...along with his sound rationale behind his choices.
To Paris with masks
The Premier League champions-elect made the short flight across to the French capital yesterday, but there was no time to check out the sights.
Game focus the order of the trip.
Parc des Princes ready
The social media team in Paris has given us an early glimpse of the stadium ahead of kick-off.
How much would you love to play out there?
PSG vs Man City live: welcome
Hello and a very warm welcome to you wherever you are joining us from around the globe for our live coverage of PSG vs Manchester City in the Champions League semi-final first leg.
We have an international audience and there has been an excitement building around this tie ever since the draw was made and the quarter finals concluded.
Tonight sees an abundance of footballing stars come out to grace the Parc des Princes and our build-up begins here...