|Kyllian Mbappe celebrates after scoring a late winner in the champions league against Real Madrid. (Photo credit: Sky Sports)|
On a night everything seemed to work against Paris Saint-Germain, Kyllian Mbappe proved the little boy is now a man has he saved the blushes of the reigning Balon d’Or winner, Lionel Messi who missed from the spot.
Real Madrid traveled to Paris for the first leg of the round of 16 fixture in the Champions League with the visitors welcoming back key figures like Luka Modric and Karim Benzema back to their starting line up after the two missed out of their weekend La Liga games.
It was PSG that looked lively all game on with Mbappe forcing saves after saves out of Thibaut Courtois in the Madrid goal. Angel Di Maria should have opened the scoring as early as the 5th minute when he blazed over from a neat work from Mbappe.
The first half ended goalless with the hosts wondering how, Real Madrid didn’t offer much going forward, but they did good job containing the 2020 finalists and they would be grateful to their goalkeeper who was instrumental to the halftime clean sheet.
PSG had a life line around the hour mark when Dani Carvajal fouled Mbappe in the area and a penalty was awarded, Messi’s tame effort was parried away by the Belgian. “I’d studied Messi’s penalties a lot, I tried to play with him on the line and of course, you need a bit of luck to”, Courtois said after the match.
With 20minutes left on the clock, Mauricio Pochettino in the home dugout introduced Neymar, it was the Brazilian that opened up Real Madrid with a back heel deep into extra time to hand Mbappe the chance to dance around two defenders and side-foot home.
"It was a great game for us and I'm always ready to help my team, there are no distractions," said Mbappe, who has now scored 13 goals in his past 13 Champions League matches.
Ferland Mendy and Casemiro will both miss the second leg on the 9th of March at Madrid’s new Santiago Bernabeu, it’s a final for them and according to coach Carlo Ancelotti, “we’re not dead yet and it’s not over, we’ll give it everything”.