Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe stole the show as Paris Saint-Germain outclassed Montpellier 4-0 on Saturday.
Paris Saint-Germain got back to winning ways thanks to a comprehensive 4-0 triumph over Montpellier on Saturday. The victory has helped them take their season tally to 83 points and put an end to a run of three consecutive games without a win.
As the scoreline suggests, it was a dominant display from the recently-crowned French champions, who looked determined to turn back the tide after three successive draws. Despite missing out on Neymar, the visitors looked in good touch, with Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe working in tandem to cause issues to the Montpellier defence.
Messi eventually netted the opener in the sixth minute before doubling his tally at the 20th-minute mark. PSG’s onslaught in the first half continued when Angel Di Maria blasted the ball to beat Dimitry Bertaud in goal, as the visitors extended their lead to three goals by the half-hour mark.
It appeared to be a long night ahead for Montpellier, who had to take up a defensive approach to prevent further humiliation. But they were not able to put a stop to the PSG brigade, conceding the fourth in the 60th minute through a penalty of Kylian Mbappe.
PSG could have scored more goals but a few missed opportunities saw the game end 4-0. Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the PSG side in their comfortable triumph over Montpellier this weekend.
Gianluigi Donnarumma: 5.5/10
Gianluigi Donnarumma fumbled an attempted clearance in the first half that could have proven to be extremely costly. Apart from that, the PSG goalkeeper only had to make a few ordinary saves as Montpellier offered very little threat going forward. An easy clean sheet for the Italian.
Solid win. Always enjoy watching Messi bang in goals. Di Maria and Mbappe exceptional as well. Donnarumma was poor and Poch waited too long to bring the youngsters on. https://t.co/rdBCsuE3wI
— PSG Talk (@PSGTalk) May 14, 2022
Thilo Kehrer: 6.5/10
Thilo Kehrer was given the nod ahead of Achraf Hakimi at right-back. The former Schalke starlet offered the defensive qualities out wide and kept things neat and tidy at the back. Not much of an impact going forward, though. He was replaced by Achraf Hakimi late in the game.
Marquinhos delivered a flawless performance at the heart of the four-man backline. He led the team well and looked quite dominant in physical and aerial duels. He was not provided much of a challenge by the Montpellier attackers either, leading to a quiet game for the Brazilian centre-back.
Sergio Ramos: 7/10
Sergio Ramos was given the nod in the starting lineup in the absence of Presnel Kimpembe. The veteran used his experience to good effect, keeping things neat and tidy at the back. He also showed an impressive ambition with his offensive forays, though he failed to produce anything conclusive at the end.
Juan Bernat: 6/10
Juan Bernat was given the nod ahead of Nuno Mendes in light of the youngster’s poor defensive gaffes in recent weeks. However, it was not the most convincing performance from the ex-Bayern Munich star as he struggled a bit to get used to the pace of the game. He was replaced by Mendes late on in the proceedings.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 5/10
In what a rare starting opportunity for Wijnaldum, the former Liverpool man once again delivered an underwhelming performance. He was unable to create anything meaningful in the middle of the park and his trademark bursts forward were missing, as ever. It won’t be surprising to see him depart PSG this summer.
And Wijnaldum? I think I can say objectively speaking that for what he has shown on the field, he does NOT deserve to have played 1650 minutes this season. https://t.co/UAlBiOlESY
— Who? (@JJOT18) May 14, 2022
Marco Verratti: 6.5/10
Marco Verratti was not as useful as he and PSG would have hoped. But his expertise on the ball, coupled with his seemingly telepathic understanding with the attackers went a long way in easing PSG’s transition from midfield to attack. Verratti will continue to play a vital role for PSG next season.
Ander Herrera: 7/10
After missing a plethora of matches this year, Ander Herrera was given a surprise start by coach Mauricio Pochettino. The Spaniard did not disappoint either. He looked confident in possession and tried to pass the ball forward at every opportunity. A much better midfield outlet than Wijnaldum.
Angel Di Maria: 7.5/10
Angel Di Maria was starting in the absence of Neymar. The Argentine international made full use of his opportunity as well, linking up well with the other attackers and making life difficult for the Montpellier defences. He was rewarded for his efforts with a goal in the first half.
Lionel Messi: 9/10
Lionel Messi was the undisputed Man of the Match in this win over Montpellier. The Argentine looked in his usual self, completely dominating the game with his nifty movements and brilliant link-up play with Mbappe. His dominance over the proceedings saw him score a quickfire brace and create countless opportunities in the final third.
⚠️ | QUICK STAT
Following the big chance he created for Kylian Mbappé in #MHSCPSG tonight, Lionel Messi has become the first player in the top 5 European leagues to create 200 big chances in the last 7 seasons.
No one else created more than 143 big chances in that time span. ? pic.twitter.com/FUaQ1PsqU2
— SofaScore (@SofaScoreINT) May 14, 2022
Messi has taken his season tally to six goals in Ligue 1, which is not ideal but the former Barcelona icon has performed exceptionally well in the French top flight since the turn of the year. He will be looking to end the season on a positive note when PSG take on Metz in the final game of the season.
Kylian Mbappe: 8.5/10
In what might have been his final away game for PSG, Kylian Mbappe ran his socks off. He worked extremely hard for every well and was willing to create chances for his teammates, notably assisting Messi for both his goals. His assist for the second goal was truly mesmerising.
In addition to his link-up play and passing, Mbappe was a menace with his speed and dribbling prowess in the final third. He is set to receive a rousing welcome when PSG host Metz next weekend, in what would be the final match of the season.
Kylian Mbappe doesn't miss from the penalty spot ? pic.twitter.com/feQpKbIznR
— GOAL (@goal) May 14, 2022
Edouard Michut: 6.5/10
Edouard Michut replaced Herrera midway through the second half. He offered energy and urgency in the middle of the park but nothing exciting.
Xavi Simons: 6.5/10
Xavi Simons came on for Wijnaldum midway through the second half. He offered a bit more creativity in the final third, and the youngster will be hoping for a start in the next game against Metz.
Achraf Hakimi: N/A
A late replacement for Kehrer. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Nuno Mendes: N/A
A late replacement for Bernat. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Djeidi Gassama: N/A
A late replacement for Di Maria. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.