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Mbappe, Messi found their groove after PSG’s comeback win against Leipzig



Mbappe, Messi found their groove after PSG’s comeback win against Leipzig

Paris St Germain’s Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi found their rhythm as they inspired their side to a 3-2 home comeback victory over RB Leipzig in a Champions League thriller on Tuesday.

Mbappe was the first to strike and Messi thanked the French striker for his brace in the second half after the Ligue 1 side lost 2-1 following goals from Andre Silva and Nordi Mukiele from each side of the gap.

Mbappe, who missed a penalty in stoppage time, prepared Messi for the equalizer and won the free kick the Argentine converted with an icy chip after what had been a poor performance from the club’s new signing .

The result left PSG ahead of Group A with seven points in three games, one point ahead of Manchester City, who demolished Club Brugge 5-1 away on Tuesday. Leipzig has no points.

“They pressed very hard and targeted Marco Verratti,” said PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino, who had to deal with the absence of the injured Neymar and suspended Angel Di Maria.

“It was a very difficult game, but the team showed their character again.”

Leipzig coach Jesse Marsch added: “There is a huge difference between us and PSG but the fact that we almost succeeded speaks volumes. We have to trust this young team.

Before Mbappe and Messi teamed up as two former teammates, PSG often looked in a bad mood, unable to cope with Leipzig’s high-pressure play.

Jesse Marsch’s side pressed hard from the start and after eight minutes, PSG’s Keylor Navas had already made three saves.

It was a double-edged sword for the visitors, as PSG threatened at the break and they opened the scoring after nine minutes.

Julian Draxler threw a long pass from Marquinhos on the way to Mbappe, who faked his marker before taking a low shot past Peter Gulacsi for his first Champions League goal this season.

Leipzig didn’t back down and in the 27th minute Silva’s volley crashed into Navas’ left post. A minute later, Silva returned Angelin’s cross to the far post to give the German team a deserved equalizer.

Leipzig were the better team and Christopher Nkunku almost gave them the lead three minutes before the break when his low shot went right off after a series of dribbles.

PSG got off to a good start in the second half, with Messi finding space between the lines, but it was Leipzig who took the lead in the 57th as Mukiele clung to another Angelino cross at the far post .

The hosts continued to struggle, but a back pass from Tyler Adams was intercepted by Mbappe who rushed into the box and fed Messi, the Argentinian kicking the ball into the empty net after Gulacsi parried his shot. inside the post after 67 minutes.

It was Mbappe who prepared Messi for PSG’s second goal in their 2-0 win over Manchester City in the previous round of matches.

Seven minutes later, Mbappe was knocked down by Mohamed Simakan and Messi converted the resulting penalty clinically before pointing again to his striking partner, who has scored his three goals at PSG so far.

PSG received a new penalty after four minutes of added time after criticism from VAR for a foul by Josko Gvardiol on Achraf Hakimi.

But Mbappe skied him over the bar, although that didn’t tarnish the 22-year-old’s sublime overall performance.

Reuters / NAN

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