Messi and Donnarumma saved the day for PSG
It might be harsh to put it that way, but when all was said and done only two men had something to write home about: Lionel Messi and Gianluigi Donnarumma.
The fact that these two play in so different positions on the pitch – in fact, the most separated from one another – tells you everything you need to know about yesterday’s performance by the Parisian club.
Messi put PSG ahead just 22 minutes into the first half, the culmination of an extraordinary link-up play started by Sergio Ramos after the Spanish defender recovered a ball right at the halfway line of the pitch. Ramos passed the ball to Hakimi kissing the sideline, who then shared it with Vitinha. A first-touch pass to Messi, later linking with Mbappe, the French connecting with Neymar and back to Messi’s left foot was all Paris needed to bag their first and only goal of the night.
It was, simply put, a marvelous play that highlighted how this team can play when at the peak of their powers. It was, also, a showcase of the individual talents of an attacking trio whose particular skills are stronger than what they do as a unit.
The same can be said of the group of field players compared to the team’s Italian goalie, Gigio Donnarumma. Donnaruma saved six shots, four of them from inside the box, and only allowed an own-goal by defender Danilo on a crossed ball from the left side of the pitch.
Other than that blip, Gigio’s night was a magic one considering all of the unbelievable stops he made and how much worse things could have looked for Paris had he not been between the goalposts.
When you have superstars all around the pitch, you expect (and, being honest, you can demand) them to deliver on a game-by-game basis. Turns out that’s not what’s going on these days around the French capital with Paris still, somehow, keeping their unbeaten run going but showing less each passing game.