Champions League: City's Comeback Win against PSG Secures them Group A Top Spot
By: Rishabh Negi
Manchester City sealed their passage into the Champions League final 16 as Group A toppers after bouncing from a goal down to beat Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 at the Etihad Stadium.
Pep Guardiola’s men dominated the opening 45 minutes but could not find a breakthrough as Mauricio Pochettino, who was heavily linked with the recently vacated Manchester United job in the build-up to the game, saw his PSG side hold firm under a barrage of pressure from the hosts.
PSG’s young gun Kylian Mbappe continued his impressive form in front of goal, opening the scoring at the Etihad Stadium at the 50-minute mark with a careful flick off a long low cross from midfielder Ander Herrera, sending the ball between City keeper Ederson’s legs. This is the first time anyone scored a nutmeg against the Brazilian shot-stopper in the 2021-22 season.
However, goals from winger Raheem Sterling at 63 minutes and Jesus at 76 minutes were enough to claim a comeback victory for City, who secured top spot in Group A with one match to spare against German wildcards RB Leipzig.
Meanwhile, this defeat will make no difference to PSG's qualifying prospects from Group A, with RB Leipzig's 5-0 win against Club Brugge confirming the French club's place in the last 16. Still, the loss condemns Pochettino's team to second spot and the prospect of a tough draw against a group winner such as Liverpool or Bayern Munich in February.
That in itself will be regarded as a failure by PSG's demanding Arabian owners. Pochettino might find himself without a job if the club is eliminated in the first knockout round.
PSG are probably the wealthiest club in world football. They currently sit 11 points clear at the top of Ligue 1 and possess the most dazzling forward line in the game with Mbappe, Lionel Messi and Neymar. However, something is wrong in the dressing room. Various media outlets report that Pochettino, who still lives in a hotel and takes regular holidays to visit his family in London, is increasingly frustrated by the absence of collective unity from top to bottom at the club.
Join India’s only non-profit Student Journalism platform and put your students ahead in the race. For more information, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.