Manchester United were beaten 3-1 by Paris Saint-Germain at Old Trafford in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening. Neymar opened the scoring in the sixth minute of the match before United equalised through Marcus Rashford in the 32nd minute. It seemed like a close match from there with Fred seeing red in the second half, when perhaps he should have been sent off in the first half, or at least substituted during the break. Marquinhos put PSG back in the lead in the 60th minute, after costly missed by Anthony Martial and Edinson Cavani before Neymar sealed the victory in added time. United will have to do it the hard way.
It was a mixed start for United as they soon fell to an early goal, which is the story of the club recently. Neymar opened the scoring in the sixth minute of the match after Kylian Mbappe took advantage of some poor positioning by Scott McTominay in the midfield and drove the ball forward towards the United box. Harry Maguire got out to make the block but the ball looped in the air into the path of the Brazilian who beat David De Gea from an acute angle to put the Parisien’s 1-0 up in the match. It was an unfortunate goal for United to concede and they would need to get themselves back into the game at some point.
Fred looked to be in trouble in the 23rd minute of the match after he seemed to headset Leandro Paredes in an off the ball challenge after Bruno Fernandes was fouled in the PSG half. VAR looked at the possible red card challenge with the referee checking the screen himself, giving the Brazilian a yellow card, which was lucky. In the 32nd minute of the match, Marcus Rashford levelled the score for United after Aaron Wan-Bissaka kept the ball in play on the right and pulled it back for Rashford to strike from 20-yards which seemed to be heading straight into the hands of Keylor Navas but was deflected off Abdou Diallo’s leg instead.
United had a few good chances at the start of the second half with Anthony Martial missing a sitter, firing it over the crossbar and minutes later, Edinson Cavani through on goal, trying to chip the goalkeeper and hitting the crossbar only for Martial to see his effort blocked by Marquinhos. This would cost United with PSG taking the lead again through Marquinhos in the 69th minute of the match, which might have been offside but VAR allowed the goal to stand. A minute later, Fred was sent off for a challenge, which should not have been the case if Solskjaer made a substitution during the break, but hindsight is fantastic.
Solskjaer made his first substitution in the 74th minute of the match with Paul Pogba replacing Rashford, who seemed to be struggling with his shoulder. It wasn’t working for United so Solskjaer made a double substitution five minutes later with Donny van de Beek replacing Cavani and Mason Greenwood replacing Martial. In the last ten minutes of the match, United were seeking to get back into the match, pushing forward but PSG had made many defensive changes and were well stocked against the ten-man United despite Greenwood using his pace to break forward. United needed to do much better.
PSG nearly has a third goal with Mbappe advancing into the United area, two on one with Neymar also running into the box. The Frenchman tried to find the goal from an angle but was wide of the match. Solskjaer made a fourth substitution with Odion Ighalo replacing Wan-Bissaka in the 90th minute. With four minutes added on, United had some work to do but it turned out that PSG scored their third goal, a brace for Neymar, assisted by Rafinha. United have suffered their second defeat in the Champions League this season and their second home defeat to PSG in the competition. West Ham United away up next for United.
Goals: Marcus Rashford 32′; Neymar 6′, 90+1′, Marquinhos 69′
Assists: Aaron Wan-Bissaka 32′; Rafinha 90+1′
Manchester United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka (Ighalo 90′), Lindelof, Maguire, Telles; McTominay, Fred; Rashford (Pogba 74′), Fernandes, Martial (Greenwood 79′); Cavani (Van de Beek 79′)
Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Bailly, Fosu-Mensah, Williams; Mata, Lingard, James, Matic
Bookings: Fred 23′, s/o 70′; Leandro Paredes 38′, Marco Verratti 59′
Written by John Walker