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Opinion

PSG started like a TGV but… (How it ended PSG 1 Newcastle 1)

3 months ago
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PSG started like a TGV but, for all their high-speed movement, Pope made only one save in the first 10 minutes, kicking away an Mbappe back-heel flick at close range.

Once we weathered the initial storm, Isak fired narrowly over from six yards after great work by Miggy Almiron.

Would our favourite Swede get a better chance?

Yes he would. After a superb move that started deep in our half, with the referee playing advantage. When the ball was worked out to the left, Livramento danced across the PSG 18-yard line and played in Almiron. Donnarumma could only push his low drive into the path of Isak, who made no mistake.

The hosts were resorting mainly to long-range shots, though a few crucial blocks kept us ahead. When we passed to feet rather than into space we looked capable of scoring again, with Bruno, Joelinton and Miley combining to good effect.

The second half was a different ball game, almost entirely attack and defence.

We rarely broke into the PSG half and, apart from a couple of isolated raids, we dug deep and dug in.

A combination of wayward finishing, some brilliant saves by Pope, determined defending and a strong referee kept the score at 1-0 for 50 nailbiting minutes until, with a terrible inevitability, Livramento was penalised for handball in our box.

He was no more than two yards from the PSG player who kicked the ball into our left-back’s torso but it bounced onto his arm and VAR did the rest. Mbappe’s fierce penalty was almost straight down the middle, just evading Pope, who dived to his left and saw the ball fly over his hand into the net.

Questions will be asked.

Several United players were out on their feet long before the end, especially Isak and Almiron, with the latter feeling the effects of some rough treatment.

Should Howe have brought on fresh legs? Could Hall, for example, have given us a get-out ball once PSG camped in our half for the final 40 minutes?

However, to criticise anyone after a magnificent fighting performance would be churlish in the extreme.

We fight on, knowing avoiding defeat at home to Milan in the final game will guarantee an extension of our European journey.

Stats via BBC Sport:

PSG 1 Newcastle 1 – Tuesday 28 November 8pm

Goals:

Newcastle United:

Isak 24

PSG:

Mbappe 90+8 pen

(Half-time stats in brackets)

Possession was PSG 72% Newcastle 28%

Total shots were PSG 31 Newcastle 5

Shots on target were PSG 7 Newcastle 2

Corners were PSG 6 Newcastle 2

Referee: Szymon Marciniak

Newcastle team v PSG:

Pope, Trippier, Lascelles, Schar, Livramento, Bruno, Lewis Miley, Joelinton, Almiron, Gordon, Isak

Unused subs:

Dubravka, Karius, Dummett, Hall, Huntley, Ndiweni, Parkinson

(PSG 1 Newcastle 1 – Instant NUFC fan / writer reaction – Read HERE)

(Brilliant Newcastle United cheated out of win at PSG – Absolute disgrace – Read HERE)

Newcastle United confirmed matches to mid-January 2024:

Saturday 2 December 2023 – Newcastle United v Man U (8pm) TNT Sports

Thursday 7 December 2023 – Everton v Newcastle (7.30pm) Amazon

Sunday 10 December 2023 – Tottenham v Newcastle (4.30pm) Sky Sports

Wednesday 13 December 2023 – Newcastle v AC Milan (8pm) TNT Sports

Saturday 16 December 2023 – Newcastle v Fulham (3pm)

Tuesday 18 December 2023 – Chelsea v Newcastle (8pm) Sky Sports

Saturday 23 December 2023 – Luton v Newcastle (3pm)

Tuesday 26 December 2023 – Newcastle v Forest (12.30pm) Amazon

Monday 1 January 2024 – Liverpool v Newcastle (8pm) Sky Sports

(Weekend of Saturday 6 January 2024 – FA Cup third round matches)

Saturday 13 January 2024 – Newcastle v Man City (5.30pm) TNT Sports

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