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Messi and Neymar singled out for poor PSG performances vs Bayern

The French media were not impressed by the performances of Messi and Neymar against Bayern.

París (Francia)Update:
Paris Saint-Germain's Argentine forward Lionel Messi (L) and Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian forward Neymar (R) leave the pitch after losing the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 football match between Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and FC Bayern Munich at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on February 14, 2023. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)

PSG suffered their third defeat in a row against Bayern Munich, and their fifth of the 2022-23 season on Tuesday. The Ligue 1 side struggled against the Bundesliga leaders, and although Kylian Mbappé's second-half introduction changed the game, it was not enough to turn the scoreline around. Lionel Messi and Neymar were quiet over the 90 minutes, partly because of Christophe Galtier’s defensive approach, and were not given the best assessment by French news outlet L’Équipe.

The Brazilian, much criticised in recent matches, was given a 3 by the French newspaper. “He offered solutions throughout the match between the lines, but his movement on the ball was not effective. He lost a lot of balls,” wrote L’Équipe. Le Parisien, a newspaper more sympathetic to PSG, was a little more generous, but only gave him a 4.

It was more of the same for Messi. The Argentinian could not combine with Neymar and, although with Mbappé he came close to scoring, his overall performance was far from what he showed during the World Cup in Qatar. L’Équipe, as with Neymar, gave him a 3, blaming him for “minimal influence on the ball until Kylian Mbappé came on”. Le Parisien was not so harsh on the man from Rosario and gave him a 4.5, although the Parisian daily stressed that “he was never able to get into the game” during the 90 minutes.

The former Barcelona captain was, with 18, the player who lost the most balls in the match in Paris, followed by Neymar, who was robbed of possession on 15 occasions. For L’Équipe, “Messi has not been the same player since the start of the year”.

Other PSG players including Marco Verratti have also been criticised by L’Équipe. The Italian was outplayed by Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka in midfield and accumulated several dangerous losses. Ramos was the big winner on the night. The Spanish centre-back was excellent in the heart of the defence.


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