Thomas Tuchel’s Paris Saint-Germain exhibited a near-perfect performance to defeat RB Leipzig 3-0 in the first semi-final. The Ligue 1 team have now scored in 34 consecutive European fixtures and will face the winner of Bayern Munich versus Lyon on August 23 for the Champions League crown.
PSG opted to sit out Mauro Icardi for the fixture and opted to play Kylian Mbappe through the middle with Neymar and Angel Di Maria on either wing. PSG started the game on the front foot with lots of energy and high pressing.
The Ligue 1 champions’ approach proved to heavy for Leipzig to handle as chances came flowing in right from kick-off. Leipzig received reprieves when Neymar’s effort hit the upright in the fifth minute and then had a goal ruled out on the grounds of handball soon after.
However, luck soon ran out as Di Maria’s inswinging delivery into the area was met with a beautiful header by Marquinhos in the thirteenth minute.
Just as the half neared its end, Leipzig goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi committed a horrendous blunder by giving the ball straight to the opposition with his goal kick. PSG’s interception provided fruitful after Neymar’s flick found Di Maria in a free space who slotted his effort into the net to double PSG’s lead.
Tuchel’s Paris Saint-Germain ruin Nagelsmann’s big day
Leipzig started the half with a double substitution to overcome the two-goal deficit. While the Bundesliga side started the half on a bright note, it was PSG who made it count with a third goal.
The ball was given away by Leipzig’s backline who appealed for a foul, but their protests reached deaf ears as Di Maria’s cross was met with Juan Bernat’s head. After a check from VAR, Paris Saint-Germain’s three-goal lead was confirmed, and with that the contest altogether.
While Leipzig did manage to probe the PSG defence in the end, it was too little too late for the side. Paris Saint-Germain were rigid throughout the match with back-up goalkeeper Sergio Rico having a comfortable outing between the sticks.
The Ligue 1 Champions had numerous chances to take their domination to the next level but their efforts were met with a resilient Peter Gulacsi who stood his ground with some important saves.
It took 110 games for Paris Saint-Germain to qualify for a European final. This would be the first instance since 2004 that a French club would mark their presence in a Champions League final.
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