Paris Saint-Germain – Olympique Lyonnais: Clever Lyon Undoes Predictable Paris (0-1)
Lyon’s strategic pressing forced PSG’s least experienced center-back into dictating the tempo of their buildup, which in turn led to numerous turnovers. The recoveries triggered a sharp and refined offensive transition from the visitors, who so perfectly exploited their opponent’s weakness. Another confusing marriage to a three-man defense left Tuchel bereft on the sideline, as his side fell for a fourth time this season.
Tactical analysis and match report by K.T. Stockwell.
The week leading up to Paris Saint-Germain’s match against Olympique Lyonnais was dominated by the fallout from a defiant stand against racism taken by the players during their midweek Champions League match against Basaksehir FK. The match was abandoned and replayed the following day; PSG ran away clear winners, but the result was secondary.
There was little time for the PSG players to refocus – forced to come to terms with a pivotal fixture against an in form Lyon on the weekend. To combat their domestic rival manager Thomas Tuchel elected to go with a 3-4-3 formation. Kylian Mbappé started the night on the bench, leaving a front line of Angel Di María, Neymar and Moise Kean. In midfield, Marco Verratti and Leoadro Paredes were selected as the central midfield duo. Marquinhos missed the match due to injury and instead Presnel Kimpembe, Danilo Pereira and Abdou Diallo started at center-back.
As they make their way through a truncated season, the absence of European football appears to have benefited Lyon. Rudi Garcia’s side has only lost one match all year and looks a far more complete outfit than the one that stumbled through the better part of the 2019/20 campaign.
The visitors stuck with . . .