While PSG may have already booked their place in this year’s Champions League play-offs ahead of Wednesday’s showdown in Turin, the Parisians were able to beat Juventus 2-1.
Although the French giants may not have managed to take the top spot in Group H after Benfica thrashed Maccabi Haifa 6-1, Christophe Galtier’s team made it through to the knockout stage with little effort.
After ending their group stage adventure thanks to goals from Kylian Mbappe and Nuno Mendez on both sides of the break, PSG have also stepped up the pressure on the struggling Juventus side.
While the Old Lady could have put in a much better game on Wednesday night, Leonardo Bonucci’s first-half strike proved to be only a minor boost to the gloomy Italians.
We’ve been knocked out of this season’s Champions League and come under scrutiny, and we’ve covered the key moments after their midweek battle in Turin.
PSG extend their recent purple spot
While PSG may have been disappointed to end up second in Group H behind Benfica, Wednesday’s visitors are in the midst of a real purple spot.
Heading to Turin after a dynamic 4-3 home win over Troyes, Galtier’s stellar squad has won each of their last five matches in all competitions.
Still undefeated since the start of the 2022/23 campaign, the former Nice manager sees his side as one of the standout contenders for this season’s first European crown.
Having booked a spot in the knockout stages of this year’s tournament after struggling 7-2 against Maccabi Haifa last week, PSG continue to build a reputation for their success in the final third.
Holding a five-point buffer at the top of the Ligue 1 table when they return to home duties against Lorient this weekend, Les Parisiens are set to make some real history this year.
Can anyone stop Mbappe?
Kylian Mbappe, seemingly easily making his way to another Ligue 1 title this season and making it to the play-offs without a lot of sweat, has played a crucial role in PSG’s drawn-out flurry.
While there may have been speculation lately that Mbappe might try to leave the French capital when the January transfer window opens, the 23-year-old is certainly doing his best.
Opening the scoring on Wednesday night after a beautiful single strike just 13 minutes later, the World Cup winner has already scored 19 goals for club and country since the start of the 2022/23 season.
Similarly, Mbappe, having landed six strikes in just his last four matches across all formats, also broke another important record on Wednesday night.
At the age of 23 years and 10 months, he became the youngest Frenchman in the competition’s history to score his 40th goal in the competition, a record previously held by Arsenal legend Thierry Henry.
Champions League nightmare for Juventus
While Juventus may have managed to put on a much tougher game on Wednesday night, their performance will not bring much joy to disappointed Turin fans.
Coming under scrutiny last week when they were eliminated from this year’s Champions League after an infamous 4-3 defeat to Benfica, the Old Lady has survived the public European struggle.
While the former Italian champions may still have European football on their agenda in 2023 after being relegated to the Europa League, Massimiliano Allegri sees an overwhelming level of pressure on his shoulders.
Despite Juventus’ hierarchy insisting the 55-year-old will not be sacked, the Wednesday hosts have failed to find any sort of stability since the new campaign opened.
While the Old Lady could do without the 12 first-team stars here, it doesn’t make things any easier for Allegri’s team.
Still outside the top six in Serie A, Juventus will next be seen on Sunday night when they meet Inter Milan in Turin.
Juventus: Szczesny, Gatti, Bonucci, Sandro, Kostic, Rabio, Locatelli, Fagioli, Cuadrado, Miretti, Milik
Subscriptions: Soul, Chiesa, Barrenechea, Barbieri
PSG: Donnarumma, Hakimi, Ramos, Marquinhos, Bernat, Vitinha, Verratti, Ruiz, Soler, Mbappe, Messi
Subscriptions: Mendez, Sanches, Pereira, Ekitike
Goals: Juventus: Bonucci (39′) – PSG: Mbappé (13′), Mendez (69′)
Yellow cards: Juventus: Gatti, Fagioli, Milik – PSG: Verratti
Red cards: N/A
Referee: Carlos del Cerro Grande