Friday, December 2, 2022



Football News – Pochettino on the brink of the abyss at PSG



Pochettino is in the eye of the storm after PSG’s elimination in the Coupe de France. The Argentine coach has a dream team, he has lost the last four titles in which he competed and, if it were not for the key against Real Madrid in two weeks, he would be out of the team.

By Facundo Di Bona (@facudibona).

A mistake by Xavi Simons on penalties left Paris Saint-Germain out in the second round of the Coupe de France against a Nice team that held 0-0, even with Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé on the pitch.

Nice arrived in Paris as second in Ligue 1 and as the only team that, in the League, had taken a point from the almighty PSG, also in a goalless draw.

An elimination that left many doubts before the great duel they will have to face against Real Madrid in the Champions League on February 15 at the Parque de los Príncipes and on March 9 at the Santiago Bernabéu.

The draw and the subsequent defeat on penalties left Mauricio Pochettino, coach of PSG, in the eye of the storm: his team was not able to generate risk plays worthy of the team he manages.

Nice took it easy and stood behind the middle of the field, with many players in defense and a line of midfielders close by, with not so many meters between them, to block any attempt by the Parisians to break lines.

The proposal, something logical due to the difference in squads between one and the other, not only went well because they managed to close the match with an unbeaten fence, but also because on the other side it exposed PSG’s lack of ideas.

Pochettino has not managed in this time to put together a team that works on its own and, with the absence of Neymar, the need for a player who has inventiveness, ideas, daring and, above all, talent was exposed.

At times it has seemed like a handball game: Paris Saint-Germain moved the ball from side to side, with an opponent who let them do it because they were not sharp, and there was simply no other idea than to touch to the wings so that they overflow.

At the beginning, Pochettino reserved Kylian Mbappé, but he put on the pitch, before Neymar’s loss, a Messi who, for the first time, wore number 10 at PSG, since in the Cup the numbers go from 1 to 11 in the Gallic tournament.

The Argentine star did not have the first chance until the 44th minute, although he was already very active in the first half, being practically the driver of the team’s game from midfield, accompanied by Marco Verratti, who was the best of the game.

Nice, a team very well built by Galtier, crouched in defense as they came on the counterattack with a great Justin Kluivert who almost put his team ahead in the 47th minute, but Giggi Donnarumma saved.

In the second half Mbappe jumped onto the field, but he could do little with a team that does not drop a single idea to surprise its rivals.

A lot of dominance by the Parisian team, but few occasions.

The Argentine coach is in the eye of the storm with many stars and few resolutions, without any daring or intensity, far removed from what Tottenham was that has managed to lead to a Champions League final.

There is no doubt that if this had happened three months ago, Pochettino would be off Paris Saint-Germain’s substitute bench.




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