Thursday, October 21, 2021

Brugge frustrate Messi and star-studded PSG

PSG’s formidable attacking trio of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappé was left frustrated by a spirited Club Brugge in a 1-1 draw in the Champions League.

Messi hit the crossbar during his 150th appearance in the competition but could not score for his new club after PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino sent out his three superstars all together for the first time.

Messi had previously made only one substitute appearance for PSG — in a 2-0 win against Reims last month — since he ended his career-long association with Barcelona last month.

Brugge captain Hans Vanaken drew the hosts level in the 27th minute after Mbappé set up Ander Herrera’s opener in the Group A game in the 15th.

Mbappe played in a centre forward role with Neymar and Messi deployed on the wings but the trio often switched positions. They played 50 minutes together before Mbappe, who suffered an apparent ankle injury, was replaced by Mauro Icardi.

Inter Milan were made to pay for their profligacy as a late goal from substitute Rodrygo saw Real Madrid snatch a 1-0 win.

Rodrygo scored in the 89th minute with what was only Madrid’s second shot on target. Inter had peppered their opponents’ goal but were denied by a string of fantastic saves and some wayward finishing.

However, Sheriff Tiraspol lead Group D after beating Shakhtar Donetsk 2-0 on their Champions League group-stage debut.

Erling Haaland scored again to help Borussia Dortmund to a 2-1 win at Turkish champions Besiktas.

The 18-year-old Jude Bellingham was outstanding as he scored the opener and set up Haaland for the Norwegian’s ninth goal in six games across all competitions this season.

Haaland, who was the Champions League’s top scorer with 10 goals last season, now has 21 goals from 17 appearances in the competition.
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