In the expected premiere of the offensive trident formed by the Argentine Lionel Messi, the brazilian Neymar and french Kylian Mbappé, Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) suffered to reap a draw on their visit to Bruges (1-1) against a Belgian team that annulled the talent of the French club with intensity and daring.
In Messi’s debut in the Champions League with PSG, after 120 goals in 149 games in the competition with the FC Barcelona, the unexpected star of the match was the Belgian Hans Vanaken, author of the goal of the tie for his family and leader of the flamenco team in the center of the field.
At PSG, with the staff of its board in the box, the Belgian “candy” was choked, and its explosive forward hardly disturbed the local goal in a game that the French faced without the Italian midfielder Marco Verratti, with discomfort in the left knee, nor the Spanish defender Sergio Ramos, who is recovering from an injury to the soleus of the left thigh.
Bruges, solo leaders in the Belgian league, presented themselves to the almighty Paris Saint-Germain as a humble team with nothing to lose and much to gain in the aforementioned duel, as the coach had said, Philippe Clement.
And in front of some 28,000 fans gathered at the stadium Jan Breydel, the Belgians drew oil from the talent pool of the brand new Qatari French league team, eclipsing their stars.
The game started as could be expected, with a festive atmosphere in the stands filled after a year and a half of restrictions due to the pandemic, Bruges overturned and PSG enduring the push of the locals, extra-motivated before their great gala match and waiting for their opportunity, which it would end up arriving.
He did it after a quarter of an hour of play thanks to Ander Herrera, who received a low cross from Mbappé on the penalty spot and shot Mignolet’s net.
And then the game began to go out of the script, because the Belgians did not wrinkle, they continued prowling the French area and found their reward.
Its captain, Belgian international Hans Vanaken, cloned the goal that PSG had scored minutes before, although this time from the left, passing Eduard Sobol and riddling the net of Keylor Navas, starter despite the fact that the Paris club has recruited the Italian national team goalkeeper, Gianluigi Donnarumma this summer.
It was the 27th minute and the game caught fire. The PSG put a march more and besieged the counterattack to the Bruges, who endured and replied.
Navas had to fight hard, first clearing a Vanaken free-kick and then a shot on a counter from The Ketelaere to prevent Brujas from having an advantage at halftime.
Messi, with PSG’s second kit, white, and the number 30 on his back, barely showed signs of life, beyond an elegant pass to Mbappé in the area that the Frenchman sent to the stands.
Brujas went to the locker room amid ovations from his audience. And things turned his face in the second half.
The long-awaited Messi-Neymar-Mbappé trident was undone when the French striker, who had been treated for a strained leg at the end of the first half, broke and asked for the change in the 50th minute, giving his place to Argentine Mauro Icardi .
Before Mpabbé’s retirement, Pochettino had replaced the Dutch midfielder Giorginio Winjaldum by german Julian Draxler and the Argentine Leandro Paredes, with yellow, for the Portuguese Danilo Pereira. But the changes didn’t work.
The Witches of Philippe Clement, without touching his eleven, he still had less possession but more danger, while Messi and Neymar still did not appear. The duo performed for the first time in the 70th minute, when the Argentine served the Brazilian he saved. Mignolet under sticks.
While Brujas and enjoyed his good moment and Noa Lang tried it with Chilean danger, the Argentine (who took a yellow in a foul without anger) He was looking for an area without fortune like the rest of PSG, who squeezed but did not suffocate Bruges in the final stretch and did not manage to take more than one point against a small club without stars.