Pochettino got scared and lost a lot

Pochettino got scared and lost a lot


In the first semi-final match of the Champions League between PSG and Manchester City, the guests got a strong-willed victory 1:2.

The key moment of the confrontation between the teams was that Guardiola tried to play more reliable away. The starting line-up of Manchester City did not include Raheem Sterling, Kun Aguero, or Gabriel Jesus. The Spaniard made a bet on strengthening the midfield at the expense of Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri and Gundogan, who were helped by Bernardo Silva.

A presence of Marco Verratti was a clear change in PSG after Bayern. The Italian structured the game of the French team by possessing the ball, thanks to which the hosts lost only 47-53 in control in the first half. This is nonsense for Cityzens who are used to keeping the ball under control.

But, as with Bayern at home, PSG had a great start and even scored a goal from a corner kick. Gundogan lost Marquinhos, partners did not hedge, and the hosts took the lead. At this point, City seemed to be over, given PSG's level of counter-attacking play. But it wasn’t how it happened.

Pochettino's men continued to squander chances at Ederson’s penalty area, and the guests could not create anything, since they did not even turn on high pressing. The only time in the first half, when this happened, Foden shot directly at Navas. The Englishman once again proved in the second half that, due to lack of experience, he panics in such situations and shoots with his eyes closed.

In the second half, PSG did not change anything in the game, although Pochettino had to react and release Draxler to help Mbappe and Neymar. They, in isolation, could not do anything with the defense of Manchester City. At the same time, Guardiola increased the pace of his team, released Zinchenko instead of tired Cancelo, and three minutes later, De Bruyne's curious cross ended in a goal. PSG tried to cool the game down with minor fouls, but brought a dangerous free kick and Mahrez took his team ahead with an accurate shot into the corner of the goal. For this, he needs to thank the collapsed wall of PSG.

A striking indicator of the match, which will affect the confrontation, was the substitution of Idrissa Gueye, who flew into Gundogan from two feet. We can't even imagine what PSG will be like in the second leg without their main defensive midfielder, but the violation deserved it.

In this match, as for us, there were more answers regarding the entire confrontation than in the Real - Chelsea pair. Pochettino was so afraid to change something and ruin the developing game for himself that he missed the Manchester City turning on moment. PSG held back the Cityzens well, but the guests were lucky sometimes, and sometimes they completely outplayed the opponents, for example, on the wings.

Nevertheless, with two away goals, a win and a major defensive midfielder sent-off, the British are the clear favorites to reach the Champions League final. When, if not now? Although we all remember that Pochettino has already passed Guardiola in the Champions League playoffs. Therefore, we will not rush to conclusions, but we will wait for the second leg in less than a week.