Ronaldinho! Ronaldinho! Ronaldinho! As the “Parc” cheers its former idol, it reminds us of the best years of the ex-hottest stands in France, Virage Auteuil and Kop Of Boulogne, while leading us to think it would be the perfect occasion for PSG to close the gap on Ligue 1 leader Monaco.
That said, Monaco starts on a stronger foot gaining two unproductive corners within the first five minutes. Paris, although struggling with its typical possession play, replies with several crosses which remain non dangerous. The first occasion at the 11th minute sees the current best European striker Cavani missing the target on a 20-meters-volley. Later on, Monaco misses a chance on a free-kick.
After 15 minutes, the game is heating up. Sidibe sends an attempt from German Draxler to a corner which is then not touched by neither defenders nor Parisians! Monaco continues to block PSG to develop its tactic and ASM Fabinho fires at Trapp who taps the ball in corner. Then a header by Cavani from a cross by Meunier is caught by ASM goalkeeper Subasic. The second part of the first half slowly comes to an equilibrium besides an attempt by defender Marquinhos from a long free kick shot by Lucas. Just before half-time, Subasic blocks a double attempt from Lucas first on a powerful shot then on the volley by Cavani. An overall mitigated first half, with best attempts on the Parisian side however.
No change to note during half time. After 30 seconds, Kurzawa loses the ball and a rush led by Bernado Silva and Falcao is pushed away by Trapp onto Lemar who tries his luck but the ball is saved by Rabiot. Lemar again shots from 25 meters and the ball is blocked by Trapp. Unfortunately after this save, the PSG goalkeeper appears injured and has to leave the field: Alphonse Areola gets in.
A PSG corner gives shivers to Monaco’s defense at the 56th minute but Paris suffers and Meunier in a strong night tackles Mendy to avoid further developments. Follows a strong cross by Lemar, but the ball is fortunately not touched by any one. Coach Emery calls Lucas back at the 60th minute and Di Maria gets in to give a new impulse to the “Rouges et Bleus”. However, Monaco is sitting in front of Paris’ cage with several corners with several attempts from Lemar and Falcao. Paris replies by a cross from Draxler, but Meunier’s volley is off target.
Last 10 minutes
Meunier again is on fire by overtaking two opponents but the cross is saved by Monaco. On the other side, Kurzawa crosses for Draxler but again the header is off target. Paris is maintaining the pressure now and Meunier again crosses for Draxler who is back-pushed by Sidibe! Penatly kick Ref! Cavani fires and scores, overtaking the legendary Pedro Miguel Pauleta in all time PSG scorers (total 110 for the Cav’) eyeing Zlatan’s record (156).
However Monaco is not giving up and accelerates while Paris is badly negotiating the last counter attacks it gets. 5 long additional minutes are now expected and finally on a corner from Monaco, Areola boxed the cross away but not far enough and Bernado Silva catches the ball on the 30 meters, comes closer and shot a low ball that the too slow Areola, although blinded by his defense, cannot catch under his body. 1-1 at the 92th minute…
What a pity, but a draw that makes sense as Paris struggled against a strong opponent which is worrying when Barca is coming soon to the capital in 2 weeks time. PSG stays behind Monaco and Nice with a 3 points lag.