Paris Saint-Germain fell 1-0 to Lyon on Sunday, their second home loss in a succession. As their World Cup-winning superstar Lionel Messi was jeered by a section of the PSG crowd.
After falling 2-0 at home to Rennes two weeks ago, Lyon’s Bradley Barcola caused PSG’s latest defeat at the Parc des Princes.
The score by Barcola, who came on as a substitute for the injured Amin Sarr. Made up for Alexandre Lacazette’s missed penalty in the first half.
It is Paris’ fifth Ligue 1 defeat of the season, all coming in 2023. And leaves Christophe Galtier’s side just six points clear of both second-placed Lens and third-placed Marseille.
Messi again mocked by fans
The night began in contentious conditions.
Whistling greeted Messi’s name as the squad lineups were announced over the loudspeaker in one section of the stadium.
Fans in another location, on the other hand, yelled back, “Messi!”
Messi, 35, is approaching the end of his two-year contract with PSG.
Talks about a possible extension have started, but he has also been linked with a return to Barcelona.
In two seasons with PSG, including Sunday’s game against ninth-placed Lyon. The veteran has played 67 games and tallied 29 goals.
“The whistles are difficult for me,” Galtier admitted.
“Leo is a player who gives a lot and has given a lot since the season started.”
“With a stroke of genius, Leo is able to deliver the right ball, provide an assist. And score a goal,” he added. I never considered pulling him off.”
PSG in difficult phase
PSG midfielder Danilo admitted the team had entered a “difficult phase”. That they needed to get out because their rivals were closing in.
“We must rise up. “The title is not guaranteed; there are still many matches,” he said on Prime Video.
PSG summoned up 17-year-old central defender El Chadaille Bitshiabu on Sunday. But he was overawed, giving the ball away too frequently.
Kylian Mbappe struggled to replicate his late scoring heroics from recent games against Strasbourg and Brest.
“We can’t expect everything from Leo and Kylian,” said Galtier.
“It’s our eighth defeat in 2023, it’s far too many.”
Next up for PSG is a trip to Nice who are undefeated since January 2. Before a crucial home clash with second-placed Lens.
The lens will be hopeful of delivering a further blow to their Qatar-owned rivals. Whose season is threatening to implode after a Champions League exit? At the hands of Bayern Munich and a French Cup loss to bitter rivals Marseille.