PSG defeated Marseille 1-0 at the Parc Des Princes stadium after a first half breakthrough from the Brazilian star Neymar.
As expected, PSG started the game looking dominant having all the possession, they’ve averaged over 64% possession in the first half of every home game this season before today. Messi and Mbappe linked up early in the third minute with Messi’s tame effort comfortably saved by Lopez.
Minutes later, a lovely move by PSG saw Mbappe break through down the left-hand side who whipped a perfect cross into Hakimi, but once again Pau Lopez was equal to the effort with a brilliant piece of goalkeeping.
Marseille finally had their first break through in the 15th minute after wing back Clauss bombed down the right wing whipping in a teasing ball across the face of goal, with no player there to tap it in from three yards out.
A miraculous counter attack from PSG saw Mbappe hit a hard but low shot excellently saved again by Lopez, just on the 20th minute mark. The move started from the home sides own penalty area with Neymar dropping deep and carrying the ball forward excellently, setting up Mbappe for the chance.
An early substitution was needed for PSG after Danilo had to withdraw himself with injury, seeing summer signing Nordi Mukiele enter the frame at Centre Back. A second injury substitution was needed after Eric Bailly pulled his hamstring diving into a challenge on Bernat minutes before half time, with Gigot replacing him.
Pau Lopez looked like he was never going to be beaten after his fourth miraculous save of the game, once again against Mbappe, with a flying right hand to stop the strike from flying into the top right corner. After being dropped last game against AC Ajaccio he clearly had something to prove to Tudor, Marseille manager, and certainly did so.
It took four players to take Messi down, but Veretout hacked him to the floor leading to a central free kick from about 20 yards with only one taker… Messi. He almost lived up to his reputation after his free kick crashes off the crossbar with Marseille once again breathing a huge sigh of relief.
In stoppage time of half time the deadlock was finally broken after a mistake from Harit was punished, as Verratti won the ball off him in a dangerous area leaving Mbappe in plenty of space to slide it into Neymar who finally beat the on form Lopez with his effort going in off the post, a deserved 1-0 lead going into half time for PSG.
Clauss almost drew his side level after an excellent ball from Sanchez over the top found the attacking wing back, who’s effort was brilliantly closed down by Donnarumma. That chance was once again created by the determination and physicality of Guendouzi, who controlled the game at large parts in the midfield.
Lopez continued his goalkeeping antics in the second half making a brilliant save against Verratti in the 60th minute. Guendouzi had a speculative effort minutes later from about 25 yards but once again Donnarumma was there to meet it.
Another mistake by Marseille, this time Veretout, saw them lose the ball in the middle with Neymar looking like he was through on goal, but Balerdi came in with an excellent recovery challenge to keep the score at 1-0. There was almost déjà vu from the goal as Harit once again lost the ball on the edge of his own box, luckily for him Mbappe scuffed his effort wide.
A double change on the 70th minute mark for Marseille saw Under and Kabore replace Harit and Tavares.
A shocking challenge from Gigot saw him sent off after a horrific studs in the air challenge on the goal scorer Neymar in the 72nd minute, leaving his side an almost impossible task to get back into the game.
Neymar, understandably so, stayed down for a long time and was lucky to escape a serious injury. That will see Gigot miss the next three games for his side. Marquinhos was yellow carded for his reaction to the challenge.
The red card opened the floodgate of chances for PSG, with a lifted chip from Messi just going over the crossbar. That was his last involvement as he was subbed off for Sarabia straight after the effort, Dieng and Gueye also came on for Veretout and Sanchez for Marseille.
The goal scorer, Neymar, was given the standing ovation he deserved after he made way in the 88th minute for Spanish midfielder Soler, adding extra bodies into the midfield.
A resilient defensive performance from Marseille saw them just about see out a 1-0 loss keeping out all the attacking threats from PSG who had an extra man for the last 20 minutes of the game. But a deserved win saw PSG retain their place at the top of the table, while Marseille occupy the last Champions League spot.