Olympique Lyonnais and Paris Saint-Germain shared points in Ligue 1 on Sunday with a 1-1 draw at Groupama Stadium which saw Lucas Paqueta put the hosts ahead of only Thilo Kehrer to save the visitors from a point towards the end of the match.
Without the convalescent Lionel Messi who returned to France after testing positive for COVID-19 during the winter break and the injured Neymar, Mauricio Pochettino opted for Kylian Mbappe, Mauro Icardi and Georginio Wijnaldum in attack and it was not pretty to have.
Mbappe, the France international, as you might expect, was by far the most dangerous of the trio and hit the wood once in every half, but was selfish at inappropriate times and had to leave it to teammates unannounced care to save a draw.
Paqueta, as he did in Paris, gave Lyon the advantage after Bruno Gumaraes’ mastery allowed his Brazilian international compatriot to finish clinically within the first 10 minutes, and only the resolute defensive display of Marquinhos assured that there were no more. joy for The Gones.
PSG worked hard for much of the meeting, and it wasn’t until Pochettino went with a triple change for the final 20 minutes that saw Edouard Michut and Xavi Simons join Kehrer to enter the fray with the first attacking last for a scuffed finish.
“We scored a point here,” Kehrer said after the game. “Obviously we wanted to win, and I think we can and must do better. We have to analyze what we have done here, think carefully and move forward while doing better in our next games.”
Otherwise, that was pretty much what has become the norm under the Argentine leadership, with Ligue 1 leaders serving a largely unpleasant game that will go unpunished as the result was bearable given that PSG still have 11 points provisional advance at the top of Ligue 1.
“It was my first game of the year and the same for most of the other players,” PSG captain Marquinhos said after the final whistle. âWe tried to do our best against an incredible opponent. They defended well overall and made it difficult for us to create spaces and move forward. We had a few chances but didn’t have them. Not gripped. Defending a first base isn’t easy, though. “
The next step for PSG is a series of three consecutive home matches with Stade Brestois 29 and Stade de Reims in Ligue 1 ahead of OGC Nice’s visit to the Coupe de France before the end of this month.