Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has brought the feel good factor to Manchester United but that was not enough for them to stop PSG in the first leg of their last 16 tie and overturning their 2-0 deficit could be beyond them tonight.
There was good reason for United to be hopeful heading into the opening leg; They had 10 wins in 11 games and were facing a PSG side that was shorn of Neymar and Cavani. However, the riches that PSG have get you top quality players for situations like this, and in their absence Ángel Di María shone, setting up both goals, whilst Marco Veratti was superb in midfield as per usual.
Kylan Mbappé scored a fine goal and was a general menace, and try as they might, United couldn’t really get close to the Parisians and Paul Pogba’s frustrated red card summed up their evening.
United have made hay with a new lease of life, but injuries are now starting to bite. Pogba’s suspension is already a problem but Nemanja Matic, Jesse Lingard, and Anthony Martial are all huge misses for a team that is reliant upon speed and width. The season ending injury to Alexis Sanchez is another blow as well.
On a domestic level, like on Saturday against Southampton, United ought to find a way but their chances of overturning a deficit at this rarefied level look rather bleak, especially given PSG’s incredible home record.
The last time they lost a game by two goals here was a 2-0 defeat to Rennes when their season was over and in the Champions League you have to go back to April 2015, when a fully fit Barcelona managed to beat them 3-1. Indeed, they’ve lost only two of their last 50 European games, so there’s not much interest in the upset.
Finding a bet is difficult – United will try to go forward at some stage to get back into the tie, but as Dortmund found out yesterday, one mistake and you can find yourself quickly down and out. That game ended up 1-0 only due to the repeated brilliance of Hugo Lloris and Jan Vertonghen when Dortmund were on top and it’s easy to see this game petering out in a similar fashion, with two top class keepers here.
PSG v Man Utd
UEFA Champions League Last-16 2nd Leg
20:00 BT Sport 2 / BT Sport 4K UHD
HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches, from last 10 years)
FEB 2019 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE Manchester United 2-0 PSG
Over 1.5 goals and 9.5 corners is a 20/21 shot on the specials, and given that was nearly the case in the first leg, it looks to be the most appealing bet on offer.
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