Kylian Mbappe scored his first goal and was the one to score the winning goal in the case of Paris Saint-Germain as they beat Juventus 1-1 on the Allianz Stadium in the Champions League on Wednesday. They was unable to finish 2nd in their group.
PSG entered the game believing they would need to win to guarantee the top place in Group H. They starting the day with a deficit of points, but ahead of goal difference against Benfica which played Maccabi Haifa at the same at the same time.
The goals of Mbappe along with Nuno Mendes appeared to put PSG ahead of the pack to be top of the group, however Benfica defeated Haifa 6-1 to keep pace with PSG on points , while also passing the ball on goal difference and win the group in the overall score of away goals.
“We’ve defeated Juventus twice before and were extremely happy until the 92nd second minute,” PSG coach Christophe Galtier declared after the match. “But If you want to be successful in this tournament, you need to be able to beat the top teams. Let’s see who is drawn and then find out who will be during the Round of 16.
“When we won 7-2 last week (over Maccabithe Maccabi team], we were off the pitch at 90 minutes minute. We were unable to score enough goals from set-pieces as we did in the game against Haifa. If we had conceded just one goal less, we’d have been at the top of the group.”
Just as he has through all of Champions League career, Mbappe scored a stunning goal early to kick off the proceedings. The France international snuck past his defender when he received the ball from Lionel Messi, cut to his right before launching an indefensible shot from the top of the field over Wojciech Szczesny to get PSG ahead.
Juventus that were eliminated from the final 16 in the tournament, did not seem to be deterred by Mbappe’s dazzling display however, and placed an immense pressure on PSG backline within the first few minutes after the opening goal, with Manuel Locatelli and Juan Cuadrado each narrowly missing chances from afar.
The action was not over as Mbappe’s feisty shot from 30 yards out was close, and Fabio Miretti missed Gianluigi Donnarumma’s far-post after discovering space when the two teams exchanged chances at the end of the 30-minute period.
An deserved equaliser eventually came for Juventus with the help of club legend Leonardo Bonucci, who redirected the low Cuadrado shot over the top of the goalmouth and into the the net after half-time. It was 1-1 at half-time.
Juventus did the better job in the first few minutes of the second period, however, substitute Mendes changed the game to PSG’s favor and scored a well-taken goal off an Mbappe assist shortly in the 68th minute after replacing Juan Bernat in the 68th minute.
Filip Kostic’s shot in the 78th minute at the very top of the field was saved by Donnarumma however, it sailed right in the direction of Locatelli for a simple finish that could have equalized the score, only after the strike was disallowed as offside.
In the wake of Benfica defeating Maccabi Haifa, Juventus still got a place on the Europe League despite the defeat and, together with PSG and PSG, the Portuguese champions, will be able to learn about their opponents in the upcoming draws on Monday.
The loss ensured Juventus losing 5 of the 6 Champions League group stage matches for the first time in their history.
Prior to this season they’d suffered just five losses in one Champions League season back in 2002-03 when they were beaten in their group stage, and three in the second stage as in the semifinal games.