Much ado About Nothing. Paris Saint-Germain and Benfica drew (1-1) this Tuesday night in Paris, a match that did not have much history on the pitch. The team owned by Qatar was mainly in the news due to rumors of the possible departure of Kylian Mbappé. Perhaps piqued by this information, the French striker led the attack of his team with a penalty goal, in addition to his dynamism and his forays down the flank. However, the good performance of Bondy’s striker was not enough to give victory to his team, who suffered from the loss of Messi and that he has been unable to beat the Portuguese in the two recent duels in the Champions League, neither in Lisbon nor Paris.
PSG started dominating the ball, although it did not generate excessive danger. In fact, Benfica had the first chance, becoming more and more comfortable on the Parc des Princes as the minutes passed. The team coached by the German Roger Schmidt —and star of one of the first surprises of this season having left on the verge of elimination the Juventus, which only has three points – was very well planted on the field. That made it difficult for the French to generate danger. They certainly missed Messidown for a few physical discomfort. He was replaced in the eleven by the Spanish Pablo Sarabia, who was the first Parisian player to shoot on goal, after 30 minutes.
Another Spaniard, the left-back Juan Bernat, broke the balance that marked almost the entire first half. An incursion of his down the flank forced a penalty from Portuguese defender Antonio Silva, who arrived late and took him ahead. How could it be otherwise, Mbappé was in charge of launching the maximum penalty, five minutes before the break. So he marked his fourth goal in four games in this Champions League and 31st in all his Champions League games. A figure that makes it the top European goalscorer in PSG historyahead of Cavani (30).
with his devilish speed and his changes of rhythm down the left flank, Bondy’s striker was the French’s main offensive argument. His good game tempered the football news of a Tuesday marked by information from the French press about Mbappé’s willingness to be transferred. “I categorically deny it.. Whether he’s happy or not, that’s a question to ask him. It is a very personal question. I see Kylian working, he is an extraordinary professional, “said Luis Campos, technical secretary of PSG, before the meeting about a transfer what does it look like very unlikely ahead of the next winter market.
The passage through the locker room did not change the script of the meeting or its protagonist. Benfica disputed the possession of the French, but when trying to press, they left space for Mbappé. Bondy’s man was about to score the second with a threaded shot in the 51st minute, but he pardoned. When you forgive, in football you pay. And a few minutes later, Verratti committed a silly penalty and Joao Mario took advantage of it to equalize the match.
Although Benfica’s equalizer came half an hour before the end, PSG did not take too many risks to seek victory. He tried it with some impressive slaloms from Mbappé. In the end, both teams settled for a tie that leaves them as co-leaders with 8 points. And with a foot and a half in the round of 16.