By refocusing on its last opportunity to win a trophy this year in the French league, Paris Saint-Germain defeated Brest 2-1 on Saturday thanks to a late Kylian Mbappe strike.
In the final seconds, Mbappe evaded the offside line to receive a throughball from Lionel Messi and around goalkeeper Marco Bizot to shoot into an open goal.
After kicking Haris Belkebla, who was on the ground, in the 85th minute, the French striker was fortunate to still be on the field.
Brest midfielder Pierre Lees-Melou stated, “We’re not claiming that’s why we lost, but I’d want to know if all the players would receive the same punishment if they did that. “I requested an explanation from the official. That was tame, he said. So let’s see what’s a genuine kick, please.
Belkebla was first fouled from behind by Mbappe. Belkebla stumbled to the floor while clinging to Mbappe’s leg. Mbappe punched Belkebla in the stomach out of petty rage. Mbappe and Belkebla received just yellow cards from the referee for the altercation.
Bayern Munich eliminated PSG from the Champions League on Wednesday, leaving it up to them to win Ligue 1. PSG has an 11-point advantage over second-place Marseille.
“Of course there is disappointment, but there is togetherness and we must go and win this crown. And there is no reason to question this cohesiveness, according to PSG coach Chistophe Galtier.
As Bizot parried a twisting long shot from Mbappe in the 37th minute, midfielder Carlos Soler hammered home the rebound. In the first half, the Spanish international posed the most danger for PSG. In the eleventh, he curled a shot that Bizot deflected against the post. Mbappe was also provided by Soler, who missed the goal in the 26th from a close range.
Bizot tormented PSG in the second half, palming away Messi’s shot from the outside of the box in the 65th and stopping a close-range attempt from Nuno Mendes in the 70th.
The PSG defence was exposed despite Brest having very little possession. In the 44th, the host took advantage of a counterattack to tie. Franck Honorat outran Timothee Pembele to strike high past goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma after making a move behind Sergio Ramos to chase down a long pass from Romain Del Castillo.
Since the World Cup, PSG has only managed to keep two league clean sheets.
By drew 0-0 with struggling Auxerre, Rennes also lost a chance to gain position in the fight for Champions League slots.
Rennes was ineffective and didn’t challenge Auxerre goalkeeper Ionut Radu until the 55th minute.
In order to get out of the relegation zone and tie Brest for third place in the standings, Auxerre extended its undefeated streak in the league to six games. Rennes maintained its position of fifth, four points behind the first three places.
Ten men behind the ball for Auxerre made it difficult for Rennes to apply pressure.
Bruno Genesio, the Rennes coach, expressed his disappointment at his players’ actions. “We played poorly enough that we couldn’t earn the three points. Our intentions were very bad. Very bad to receive the ball or open up space, which is often our strength, in our high-intensity sprints.