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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: Manchester United not dead in Europe despite PSG defeat

13 February 2019

Paris Saint-Germain 2 (Presnel Kimpembe 53', Kylian Mbappe 60') Manchester United 0 HT: 0-0.

'And they lost the battle there, in midfield. PSG had been beaten twice already in the new year and, worse still, lost superstar forward Neymar to a long-term injury.

Paris Saint-Germain made their Champions League win over Manchester United "seem easy", according to goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.

And that is why - disappointing though it was to be brutally brushed aside by a PSG team missing superstars Neymar and Edinson Cavani - this loss should not figure large in United's calculations about whether to appoint the Norwegian as the full-time successor to Mourinho. Paul Pogba was sent off for United in the late going. Two goals is not an insurmountable lead, and United's firepower means this tie certainly isn't over.

Having a good run in the Premier League is one thing, but doing it against the big boys at the sharp end of the Champions League is something else. Yet after straight quarterfinal eliminations from 2013 through 2016, PSG has only regressed by going out in this round of 16 the last two seasons.

The French midfielder has been a revelation in recent weeks - a far cry from his struggles under Mourinho. It's now looking unlikely that anything will redeem this campaign though.

The World Cup victor has scored eight goals and set up another five since Solskjaer took over in mid-December and having been given licence to roam from midfield has looked a player re-born.

"We are in a hard tournament, whoever you play against, but our bread and butter is the league and then the FA Cup against Chelsea, there's so many games to play for". The referee was badly placed and gave a yellow card to the Englishman. Mbappe had the best chance in the 28 minute, but missed the target with his sliding finish, perhaps not doing justice to the opportunity.

There was a lot of this....

But from the resulting corner, Kimpembe was left completely unmarked to side-foot home from point-blank range.

Meanwhile, Dani Alves praised PSG's ability to "draw from our collective strength", while Julian Draxler paid tribute to the fans.

The second goal, on the hour, was the culmination of an electric counterattack.

Despite the incredible pass from Di Maria, Mbappe simply stole the show on the goal.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: Manchester United not dead in Europe despite PSG defeat