Zinedine Zidane Warns Real Madrid Will ‘Suffer’ in Paris, PSG Owner Rages at Ref

Zinedine Zidane Warns Real Madrid Will ‘Suffer’ in Paris, PSG Owner Rages at Ref

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Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has urged his players not to get too carried away after they beat Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday, while PSG owner Nasser Al-Khelaifi believes Los Bancos were "helped" by referee Gianluca Rocchi. 

According to Marca‘s Pablo Polo, Zidane said:

"This isn’t over. There are 90 minutes-plus left. We are happy because we played a great match with personality and with our fans, who have always been behind the team.

"We have to be happy today but in three weeks we will play another match. We know that we are going to suffer."

PSG took the lead in the first half at the Santiago Bernabeu through an unlikely source, Adrien Rabiot, but the hosts were soon level through a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty on the stroke of half-time after Giovani Lo Celso brought down Toni Kroos.

Late goals from Ronaldo and Marcelo sealed the first-leg victory for Champions League holders Real.

Football journalist David Cartlidge praised Madrid boss Zidane:

Al-Khelaifi held the referee responsible for PSG’s defeat, though. He told beIN Sports (h/t MailOnline’s Glen Williams):

"The result was not just. I think we played better in the second half, we had our chances to score, but we made mistakes.

"[Kylian] Mbappe was called offside. … The referee’s mistakes cost us. The referee has helped Madrid."

Per ESPN FC’s Jonathan Johnson, he added:

Despite Al-Khelaifi’s complaints, PSG benefited from a refereeing error in the match when Neymar escaped a second yellow card for diving, having already been booked for a foul on Nacho.

BBC Sport’s John Bennett believed he should have earned his marching orders:

The Brazilian’s presence will be crucial to any comeback PSG are able to mount in the second leg, so Les Parisiens should perhaps count themselves fortunate.

Unlike PSG’s owner, their goalscorer, Rabiot, placed the team’s failure on themselves, per Get French Football News:

Though PSG have been able to compete financially since Al-Khelaifi took over in 2011 and have brought in a great deal of talent during that time, they’re yet to make it past the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

That perhaps hints at a mental fragility on the biggest stage, which they demonstrated last year as they threw away a 4-0 lead against Barcelona in the last 16.

One of the reasons Neymar was brought in was to help engineer European success, so PSG will look to him in the second leg at the Parc des Princes.

Their away goal will come in handy, but keeping Real out will be no mean feat, and Los Blancos’ superior experience gives them a significant edge.

Breaking Sports News

via Bleacher Report – Front Page http://ift.tt/yO6Sgr

February 15, 2018 at 02:07AM

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