PSG – Bernat (12’), (Neymar (36’)
Liverpool – Milner (P 45+2)
It was a night to forget for Liverpool in Paris as a sub-par first-half performance costs them in a 2-1 loss to PSG
The Reds fell behind just 12 minutes in, following a poor clearance from Van Dijk. Bernat was first to the ball and slotted it through the legs of Joe Gomez.
It appeared Liverpool’s defense, which has looked solid so far this season, switched off with both Gomez and Lovren failing to reach the loose ball.
Veratti was arguably lucky not to see red for a dangerous challenge on Gomez. The referee instead opted to give the midfielder a yellow card.
Liverpool remained under pressure and was later undone by a blistering counter-attack from the French champions.
The pace of Mbappe was too much for the Liverpool defense and whilst Alisson was able to stop the initial shot from Cavani, he was unable to stop Neymar who slotted in the rebound.
The Reds received a lifeline on the brink of halftime when Mane was bought down just inside the box. Milner stepped up and fired home from the spot, sending Buffon the wrong way.
Despite an improved second-half display, the Klopp’s men still lacked a bit of magic in the final third to find an equalizer.
It was a night to forget for the referee who came under scrutiny for some of the decisions he did, or didn’t, make. Most notably the failure to show Veratti a red card for a dreadful tackle but also giving a corner for the foul of Mane. Fortunately for Liverpool, the assistant referee stepped in and the correct decision was given.
What’s Next in Group C?
It all goes down to the final match day in Group C, where Liverpool take on Napoli at Anfield and PSG face Red Star in Serbia.
Here’s where it gets confusing.
A 1-0 victory will be enough to see Liverpool through but if they concede against Napoli, they must win by 2 clear goals.
However, if Red Star manages to hold PSG to a draw in Belgrade, a win by any margin will be enough to see Liverpool through.
Napoli only needs a point to secure their place in the round of 16.
Either way, it should come to a dramatic end on the 11thof December when the group stage comes to a close. Liverpool will hope for another memorable night at Anfield as they face possibly their biggest test of the season so far.
Player and Manager Ratings:
Buffon – 7 (Didn’t have too much to do but was there when called upon)
Kehrer – 8 (Solid display, hardly gave Liverpool a look in)
Thiago Silva – 9 (Went down too easy at times looking for a foul but was solid defensively and made some crucial blocks/tackles to keep Liverpool at bay)
Kimpembe – 8 (Also solid defensively for the home side, preventing Liverpool from having many clear-cut chances)
Bernat – 8 (Found himself on the score sheet for PSG with a brilliant finish, giving them an early lead)
Verratti – 7 (Controlled the midfield, but was lucky to remain on the pitch following his tackle on Gomez)
Marquinhos – 8 (Looked a threat, tested Alisson at times but was unable to get on the scoresheet)
Mbappe – 8 (Played a crucial role in PSG’s second goal with his blistering pace, the youngster was a constant threat)
Neymar Jr – 7 (Found himself on the scoresheet with PSG’s second goal of the night, but looking for the foul far too often and goes down far too easy)
Di Maria – 6 (Wiped out Mane and conceded the penalty, was threatening at times)
Cavani – 6 (Substituted in the second half, had a decent shot saved by Alisson
Dani Alves – 6 (Too much playacting and diving, unfortunate given he’s such a talented player)
Choupo-Moting – 6 (A year ago he was beaten by Liverpool with Stoke, today he came on for PSG in a 2-1 victory over the reds, incredible what a year can do. Looked decent)
Rabiot 6 (Didn’t have enough time to make an impact)
Manager Rating: Tuchel – 8 (Set his team up perfectly and will be extremely relieved with the result)
Alisson – 8 (Made some crucial saves to keep Liverpool in the game.)
Gomez – 5 (Caught out a fair few times, had the difficult task of keeping Neymar at bay.)
Lovren – 5 (A few last-ditch tackles and clearances, fell asleep for the first goal and didn’t do enough to stop the counter-attack.)
Van Dijk – 6 (Poor clearance led to the first goal and struggled against PSG’s attack, but was imperious in the air)
Robertson – 6 (Not his usual attacking threat but was one of the red’s brighter players)
Henderson – 5 (Unable to dictate the tempo or control the game, not the best performance from the Liverpool skipper)
Wijnaldum – 4 (An early yellow card meant he walked a fine line, eventually getting subbed for Keita in the second half. Unable to provide much going forward)
Milner – 6 (Was caught in possession a few times but stepped up when it mattered and scored the penalty in a hostile atmosphere. Cool, calm and collected)
Salah – 5 (Wasn’t much of a threat but was marked well by PSG)
Firmino – 4 (Not the best performance from the Liverpool forward, subbed off for Sturridge in the second half)
Mane – 5 (Won the penalty which put Liverpool back in the game but wasn’t too much of a threat)
Keita – 5 (Looked bright when he came on, got booked late on)
Sturridge – 5 (Ended up getting booked also, wasn’t able to do much)
Shaqiri – 5 (Didn’t have enough time to make much of an impact, but looked threatening)
Manager Rating: Klopp – 6 (Made changes in the backline, opting for a more defensive option with Gomez at right-back rather than Trent Alexander-Arnold. Arguably not enough creativity in the midfield, but it was understandable he went with his trusted players in a big European away)
Liverpool faces another big test this weekend when they take on Everton at Anfield. The Reds will hope to maintain their unbeaten league run whereas Everton will be looking for their first Merseyside Derby victory since October 2010.
In Ligue 1, PSG will travel to Bordeaux, who currently sit 12th. Tuchel’s side has won every domestic fixture so far this season and sit top of the table. They are 15 points clear of second place Lyon.
By Hannah Pinnock