PSG vs Manchester City score, takeaways: Messi scores club’s first goal and beats ex-boss Guardiola


Lionel Messi scored his first goal for Paris Saint-Germain and his new club claimed their first Champions League group stage victory on Tuesday, beating compatriot Manchester City 2-0 on matchday two. draw at Club Brugge, and with Messi yet to register an assist or goal for his new team, it seemed like it was only a matter of time before they got their performance and that Messi does not mark the pace.

With Idrissa Gueye grabbing a handsome winner eight minutes later, PSG were in a comfortable position for much of the first half but it looked like they were going to waste him. It’s a surprise that the opening goal remained the winner as City looked destined to score. In the second half City jumped into the competition and threatened repeatedly, especially on the right, but Gianluigi Donnarumma came out on top with plenty of saves from tight angles.

And just when it looked like an equalizer could come, Messi broke free on the right, combined with Kylian Mbappe and expertly finished, without setting the ball, in the upper right corner. Looked:

It was a deserved result for clinical PSG, who have resorted to late winners lately. Despite being beaten 18-6 and failing to win the possession battle, the hosts managed to largely contain City’s forwards, get some luck when they needed it and get revenge a little bit from last season’s semi-finals.

The victory puts PSG in first place in Group A with a 1-1-0 record, while City are third at 1-0-1.

Here are three takeaways from the game:

There is the signing moment of Messi

This may be what will open the floodgates for Messi and PSG. With all eyes on him and even more pressure, Messi put in his best performance for the club and looked at ease. He was all over the place, coming in, pushing away, he often needed just one touch to play a player in space, and he showed City what they need by not landing him.

He ended up playing 90 minutes, completed nearly 90 percent of his passes and 93.8 percent in the final third, only had one shot on goal but took it with serious class.

His celebration showed exactly what that meant to him, and it looked like a potential turning point for a PSG who had been inconsistent so far this season. It’s a confidence booster for both the club and for him, and now the key will be to keep going as it will only get more difficult from here on out.

The city, on paper, deserved more

As PSG walk away with victory, the numbers tell a more complicated story. City finished with 2.81 expected goals (xG) against 0.46 for PSG. City have had three times as many shots as PSG. But don’t be fooled by those numbers, as Guardiola’s side weren’t that close to scoring other than a few crazy seconds in the first half. After a header from Raheem Sterling hit the crossbar, Bernardo Silva essentially had two types of open looks right in front of an open goal. The first hit the crossbar about three yards away, and the second passed by. Those two chances combined for an xG of 1.59, more than half of City’s total xG. If you add Sterling’s header and 0.29 xG, that’s 1.88 of their total xG in just 10 seconds.

It goes without saying how much of a missed opportunity this was. It’s even hard to understand how it didn’t turn out, as it seemed easier to miss than to do. Silva couldn’t believe it, and there was no way to get over it because PSG would kill the game late. A game of thumbs.

Is it time for City to engage with an attacker?

Let Pep Guardiola try to be cute and play Raheem Sterling as his fake nine. He did it with Phil Foden last weekend, but at least he had a striker in there in Gabriel Jesus who took the winner at Chelsea. But in this one, with an attacking trio consisting of Sterling, Jack Grealish and Riyad Mahrez, they never felt like constant threats. Gabriel Jesus came on and only played 12 minutes at the end of the game, and it was another example of trying to let pace and technical ability take over a team that has rhythm, technical abilities and attackers who play at the center of PSG.

City haven’t scored in three of their last nine games since last season. In their previous 23 matches, they had scored in 21 of them.

The striker they need might not be on their roster, but too often lately we’ve seen this team go from the goal scoring machine to silence. It’s early, but do they really have enough offensive, down the middle, to win this thing against the big guys? From losing to Lyon two seasons ago to losing in the final last year and now Guardiola has more work to do than he thinks.

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