Poor PSG have Bayern licking their lips! Winners, losers & ratings as Monaco defeat sets off Champions League alarm

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Neymar PSG Monaco 2022-23
PSG conceded twice inside the first 20 minutes and turned in a morbid performance without some of their big names, all with Bayern Munich lurking.

Paris Saint-Germain struggled from the first minute against Monaco, their injury-stricken side which is now also dealing with illness being torn apart by an aggressive home team.

They failed to find an attacking rhythm in response to Monaco's fast start, losing 3-1 and heightening fears of what could be a difficult 90 minutes against Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Tuesday, potentially without Lionel Messi.

Monaco thoroughly enjoyed the opening exchanges. Aleksandr Golovin took advantage of a series of ricochets inside the PSG box before poking home past Gianluigi Donnarumma for a 1-0 lead inside three minutes. Yissam Ben Yedder added a second about 15 minutes later, dispossessing young centre-back E.C. Bitshiabu and lashing the ball into the bottom corner.

A virus struck PSG's camp prior to the match, and with a litany of players - including Leo Messi and Kylian Mbappe - already sidelined, the Ligue 1 leaders faltered. There was some resistance, with teenager Warren Zaire-Emery pulling one back shortly before the break, but Ben Yedder quashed any notions of a comeback, scoring his second in first-half injury time.

Christophe Galtier brought Bitshiabu off at half-time, and also introduced some younger faces for more attacking thrust within the first few minutes of the second half. But none of the changes flipped the game.

The Parisians still have a healthy seven-point lead atop the table, and will likely do enough to win Ligue 1. This match, though, set off alarm bells ahead of a massive Champions League tie, and showed how bad PSG can be without their star men.

  1. The Winners
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    The Winners

    Wissam Ben Yedder:

    It's genuinely quite nice to see that the striker can still put in these kinds of performances at 32 years old. Ben Yedder was at his direct, devastating best on Saturday. He scored twice, making both finishes look almost effortless, while also grabbing an assist. There was nothing fancy about his game; Ben Yedder did a lot of running in straight lines towards goal. But he didn't need to be technical or flashy. Monaco were always going to play on the break, and Ben Yedder was the perfect player to spearhead the attack.

    Warren Zaire-Emery:

    It's not necessarily a good thing that PSG's best performer was a 16-year-old. But when it's someone of Zaire-Emery's quality and potential, Galtier can probably live with it. Zaire-Emery put in a memorable showing against Monaco, winning the ball back with regularity, keeping it moving, and scoring PSG's only goal. On another day, with a fit and firing team around him, Zaire-Emery would receive more praise for this kind of performance. It's just a shame that it came in a loss.

    Presnel Kimpembe:

    Silver linings, eh? In an otherwise difficult afternoon, at least Kimpembe was able to see the pitch for the first time since November. On the other hand, it probably wasn't great to watch a 17-year-old make a couple of mistakes while playing in his usual spot during the first half.

  2. The Losers
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    The Losers

    E.C Bitshiabu:

    The defender is just 17. He will, in all likelihood, become a far better footballer than he showed on Saturday. But he had a miserable 45 minutes against Monaco. Bitshiabu failed to clear the ball in the run up for Monaco's first goal, and was far too easily dispossessed for their second. He was nowhere to be found, either, when Ben Yedder ran through for the third. Bitshiabu was forced into the lineup by necessity after injuries and a freak illness struck Galtier's squad. Perhaps his hasty involvement impacted the quality of his performance. Still, he, unfortunately, has to be held responsible for at least of some of PSG's failures.


    Neymar cannot do everything, especially when he's still quite clearly reeling from an ankle knock sustained two months ago. Still, with Mbappe and Messi both out, the Brazilian needed to show something. Instead, he dribbled, dived and failed to register a shot on target. It was all a bit concerning, especially given that Neymar might be expected to carry the weight again on Tuesday night against Bayern. He will need to be far better in that fixture.

    Christophe Galtier:

    What was Galtier supposed to do? He had five players out altogether due to injury, and a further three unable to start. Monaco, meanwhile, are playing some of their best football of the season, with Ben Yedder in fine form. It all amounted to an inevitably difficult afternoon for the PSG manager. And he set up his team in perhaps the best way possible, given the options at his disposal. There were some good signs. Warren Zaire-Emery was excellent, while Donnarumma made some excellent saves. But it was difficult to pick out another good performance, which is a concern for the manager who is starting to deal with external presssure.

  3. PSG Ratings: Defence
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    PSG Ratings: Defence

    Gianluigi Donnarumma (6/10):

    Denied Golovin from close range to prevent Monaco from taking a 3-1 lead. Produced a few more saves to stop things from getting out of hand.

    EC Bitshiabu (4/10):

    Made a big mistake in the run-up to Monaco's second, and should have done better for their first.

    Marquinhos (5/10):

    Completed the most passes in the match, which is good. But was also very poor defensively, especially for the first two goals.

    Danilo Pereira (5/10):

    Poor at right centre-back, not much better at centre-midfield, and substituted with one eye on Bayern.

  4. Midfield
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    Juan Bernat (6/10):

    One of very few good performers on the day, Bernat was energetic on the left wing and did his job defensively — although he could have protected Bitshiabu more effectively.

    Carlos Soler (5/10):


    Vitinha (6/10):

    Improved after a string of poor performances, but lacks the creativity needed from the middle of the park.

    Warren Zaire-Emery (7/10):

    An incredibly mature performance from the 16-year-old. Looked comfortable on the ball, grabbed a goal. PSG's standout.

    Timothee Pembele (5/10):

    Replaced Achraf Hakimi, which isn't really fair in terms of shoes to fill. Got into good positions, though.

  5. Attack
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    Hugo Ekitike (6/10):

    Indecisive and ineffective in the final third. Will need to be better, as he will probably be in the XI on Tuesday.

    Neymar (5/10):

    Poor, even appearing disinterested at times. PSG needed a big showing, and Neymar failed to deliver.

  6. Subs & Manager
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    Subs & Manager

    Sergio Ramos (6/10):

    Brought on at half-time for the struggling Bitshiabu.

    Ismael Gharbi (6/10):

    Added a bit more attacking thrust to PSG's midfield.

    Achraf Hakimi (6/10):

    A welcome introduction for the struggling Pembele. Occasionally exploited on the break.

    Presnel Kimpebe (6/10):

    A welcome return to the pitch, but didn't look particularly comfortable.

    Ilyes Housni (N/A):

    Touched the ball eight times in 10 minutes.

    Christophe Galtier (5/10):

    Did the best with the resources he had, which doesn't reflect well on the team or his managerial skills. He'll need a far better performance out of a largely similar side on Tuesday.