PSG boss Thomas Tuchel now appears to be on borrowed time after his team squandered a 2-0 first-leg advantage in their Champions League last-16 tie against Manchester United, losing the home leg 3-1 to go out on away goals.
No side had ever overcome a two-goal home loss and progressed from a knockout match in the competition’s history – but United wound back the years to seal a memorable triumph in the French capital.
Le Parisien put the boot in by describing PSG’s exit as “unforgivable” and said the club was “cursed”.
Columnist Dominique Severac said the result was like “an earthquake” and “an industrial accident”. He wrote in Le Parisien: “There was the ‘remontada’ (Barcelona’s comeback against PSG) in 2017, there is now the trauma of 2019, confirming the club is cursed.”
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Severac added that United’s winner – a penalty awarded after a VAR intervention, was a “hellish cruelty, sending the capital club back to its demons, its mental fragility, its unlikely individual mistakes”.
“If it had been written, nobody would believe it,” he added.
“It exists and it’s completely crazy, surreal, crazy, unprecedented. Sad if we love PSG, incredible if we worship football, very ‘PSG’ if we follow PSG.
“With PSG, it’s often (the team’s) own fault, reminding the opponent that he does not have to push too hard to bring down this paper giant.”
While L’Equipe described the outcome as a “cataclysm” for PSG. Damien Degorre wrote: “Who (is) to blame? Gianluigi Buffon, for not managing to hold a harmless strike from Marcus Rashford, while Manchester United did not exist in this match?
“Kylian Mbappe, who had the ball at 2-2, alone against David De Gea, in the 84th minute? Thilo Kehrer, who had placed the same Lukaku and his team in orbit while the match had just started?
“Thomas Tuchel, who gave the feeling of suffering the end of the match and to be satisfied with this sufficient defeat by a (single) goal until the beginnings of the additional time?”
Romelu Lukaku scored twice in a frantic first half, although Juan Bernat’s effort meant Solskjaer’s side had to score one more away goal to progress.
Just as hope of a first quarter-final appearance since 2014 began to fade, the video assistant referee intervened and referee Damir Skomina pointed to the spot after adjudging Presnel Kimpembe guilty of handball at the death.
Ice-cool Marcus Rashford smashed home his first penalty for the club to send all connected with United wild and surely secure Solskjaer the permanent job after his 14th win in 17 matches.
The players were chanting the manager’s name in the dressing room after the match and Luke Shaw believes it is a case of when rather than if the Norwegian becomes Jose Mourinho’s permanent successor.
“I don’t think I need to say much after all these results, it looks certain,” the United left-back said.
“We all love Ole and we love the job he’s done so far. We’re enjoying everything that’s going on at the moment and the results have shown that.
“We’ve had a couple of blips but that’s nine away matches (won in a row) now, they’re not easy games, but it shows what sort of job Ole and his staff have done.
“Long may that continue.”