Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 Nice: Player ratings as Messi & Mbappe save PSG

by | 2 October, 2022 | Ligue 1 News

Messi was at his best

Messi was at his best

Paris Saint-Germain left it late to beat Nice 2-1 at Parc des Princes and return to the top of the Ligue 1 table.

Christophe Galtier remains unbeaten as manager but found it tough against his former side, and required a goal from substitute Kylian Mbappe to secure victory against the early-season strugglers.

Nice had the better of the opening ten minutes, but PSG came close to breaking the deadlock through a Lionel Messi free-kick, though his 30-yard strike bounced just wide of the post.

Ross Barkley, on loan at Nice from Chelsea, was set racing through on goal by Mario Lemina, but was well marshalled by a retreating Marquinhos and the hosts were let off the hook for their insanely high line.

PSG took the lead after half an hour when Messi danced his way through the Nice defence, eventually drawing a foul from Dante, and the Argentine stepped up to fire home the resulting free-kick from the edge of the penalty area.

Messi nearly doubled the lead in first-half stoppage time with a stinging strike from 18 yards, but his time Kasper Schmeichel was able to push it over the top.

But just after the restart, Nice found a leveller. Youcef Atal’s cross bounced between and over both of Marquinhos and Nordi Mukiele, allowing Gaetan Laborde to scramble home from close range.

Another ball in from Atal caused a panic in the PSG box minutes later, and the hosts were fortunate that Melvin Bard fired over with his weaker right foot.

Vitinha and Neymar both flashed shots off target at the end of swift PSG counter attacks, while Messi somehow picked out Nuno Mendes with a through ball only for the wing-back to be denied by the legs of Schmeichel.

And Nice’s resistance caved in with just under ten minutes remaining when Mukiele won the ball back high up the pitch, and his cutback was swept home by Mbappe to steal the win.