The Champions League is back with a particularly juicy fixture to kick things off in Europe’s elite competition. Earlier this evening, we saw Dortmund take care of business against Copenhagen with a 3–0 victory, while we had a stunner in the other early kickoff with Dinamo Zagreb stuns Chelsea in Croatia as Mislav Orsic first half goal is enough to put Chelsea in their place as the Croatians earned a 1–0 victory. A lot of fixtures flying left and right, but the one in particular that drew my attention was the one in Paris at the Parc Des Princes. As we would see, PSG a loaded superteam with the likes of Neymar Mbappe and Lionel Messi to set things right for the Parisians. As they have the reputation of choking in the biggest stage of the competition. PSG is looking to kill that narrative and finally win the champions league. After the collapse of last season, PSG is determined to turn things around with Neymar already in Ballon D’or form this upcoming season with the most goal involvements of any player in European football this far, still with the reputation posing themselves as a potential threat to the rest of European football. While on the other side Italian Giants Juventus have been to two champions league finals this decade but have flamed out to underwhelming competition in the past four years. Max Allegri may not be fit for the job he sits in, but the squad he has at his disposal is still very strong and presents an obstacle to Paris. In what was expected to be a very thrilling and contentious way to kick off the champions league, 47,000 filled the seats in Paris as the events began to unfold. The Champions League is back. Ladies and gentlemen, with a great clash to kick off group B.
PSG made a very early statement, essentially dictating the pace in the early portions of the match. Really pressurizing the Italians, forcing them to operate out of their own box. Their superstar lead team found the connection in the early parts of the game. A very aggressive start for PSG as it didn’t take very long for the magic to occur. In the fifth minute. Neymar the best player in the world at the moment, shows his incredible brilliance. Without even looking up or at least barely looking up at all, he flings the ball as he is dribbling towards the danger area, hooking it into the box as Mbappe made a run inside, hitting it out of the air, drilling it into the bottom corner as PSG show their superiority as the Neymar Mbappe connection gives PSG a 1–0 lead. An outstanding finish by Mbappe, who hits it cleanly, giving Mateo Perin not a chance in the world to save it. However, the magical playmaking ability of Neymar orchestrated the situation allowing his teammate to pick it out of the air and put them in front very early on as Juventus already feeling the vulnerability of PSG and their capabilities as they saw Neymar and Mbappe already cooking in Paris. PSG had the majority of the ball, and we’re moving it very swiftly up and down the pitch. Juventus may not have had the best start to the game over. Trying to find their way into it. The dictation and control by Neymar opened everything up for PSG, which allowed them to dominate the early portions of the game. However, occasionally the Italians got on it and put themselves in a dangerous position. Even though they were dominating and left for dead, occasional opportunities did fall their way. Milik followed through with his head after a Juan Cuadrado cross into the box. The Polish international should have done better as a very nearly could have been the equalizer. Kostic and Vlahovic both went for it with a pair of chances shortly after but were unable to put Donnarumna under serious pressure. Before not too long, PSG was in again. In the 22nd minute, Hakimi brilliantly moves as he collects. Driving the ball into the corner before finding a passing lane. Shoveling the ball over to Mbappe, the French superstar catches it and drills it into the bottom corner, completing his brace as PSG takes a 2–0 lead. Again very well. Orchestrated by hakini but a very difficult strike that Mbappe makes look easy as Juventus already appears in trouble. The later we got into the first half, the more control PSG looked. Juventus looked unprepared and out of their depth. Bremen gets his head on the end of a cross but unable to really challenge the Italian goalkeeper. PSG then hits back with Vitinha, who was put through by Leo Messi’s strikes on goal but can’t convert to make it three. It continued to be Neymar’s magic, especially showing his playmaking ability and his connection with his teammates around him. Late. In the first half, he cut through two defenders before cutting into the box, being face to face with last year’s Serie A defender of the Year, putting the ball between his legs and nutmegging him in the process as he cuts into the box. It was a sequence of absolute brilliance despite Mbappe having the two goals. Neymar was the one making everything happen for PSG. Marco Verratti connects on a deep strike that misfires to end the first half as PSG holds 2–0 lead thanks to the brilliance of Neymar and the conversion of Mbappe.
PSG was in complete control and was finding life very easy in Paris against Juventus. Two great goals from Mbappe and really had a difficult time dealing with Neymar regularly along with Leo Messi playing in opportunities for his teammates as the playmaking ability of PSG was a serious problem for Juventus. Juventus were horrid in the first half and needed to change. Max Allegri made some adjustments as Juventus opted for a different approach in the second half. Kostic looks from deep but donnarumma, being forced into action for the first time of the evening, manages to get his hand on it. An early chance from Juventus. Hoping to egg them on as the second half continued. However, it ended up truly being the Neymar show in Paris. Just pure magic with the ball at his feet. Cutting through a Juventus defense before firing a strike at Mateo perin. The Juventus goalkeeper manages to get his hand on it but very nearly could have been duped by the Brazilian playmaker. On the break. PSG was antagonizing. Lionel Messi putting through Killian Mbappe. With a great opportunity to kill the game off once and for all. The French superstar did all the right things with a well-time strike but just very nearly missed the target. Had he hit it a little lower, It surely would have been his hat trick, a very selfish action. In the 53rd minute, Juventus finally found their way in. Coming out for a corner kick, substitute Weston McKennie follows through with his head beating donnarumma as they get a goal back for Juventus in Paris. The American proving once again that he is superior to the crowned Christian Pulisic in the American viewpoint shows once again that he is the best American giving Juventus a lifeline in the process. An Invigorated Juventus all of a sudden going for it. The problem was donnarumma was sharp, particularly in the second half. as he got his hand on the end of the vicious header from Vlahovic before Kostic and Mckinnie both missed the mark for Juventus. Adrien rabiot Looks to catch the Italian keeper off guard with a strike from deep, but Juventus is still failing to break them down. Another thing worth mentioning is PSG defended at an extremely high level, limiting very few high-quality chances into the box. Leo Messi, still showing his playmaking, is in very high regard putting through Mbappe twice in the manner of minutes. The pace and athleticism of the young Frenchman is a joke. He got himself in dangerous positions but couldn’t quite get himself his hat trick as his ego got in the way again of making the right pass. Juventus were much improved in the second half, but PSG still was the more dangerous aside from the way they came forward. Neymar continued to be absolutely unplayable, giving it to Leo Messi, but the goat couldn’t extend the lead. He had another chance a few minutes later a well-hit strike from deep, but Mateo perin did a good job tracking the ball and collecting it into the bottom corner. Juventus continued to go for it, but chances from Manuel Locatelli and Vlahovic couldn’t land. Didn’t stop PSG from looking to kill it off as it was tightly contested for much of the second half. Neymar comes close to extending it, then was giving it a free kick not long after, very narrowly missing as the Brazilian playmaker was a problem for everyone all game long. Mbappe may have got the goals, but Neymar did everything for PSG. Neymar did his little magic, getting into the box before being denied. Then Mbappe did the same striking from the side of the box, but PSG unable to extend it any further as full-time whistle goes in Paris as PSG make a resounding statement for their group with a 2–1 victory to kick off the campaign with a huge win against Juventus.
PSG’s interpersonal issues from a few weeks ago now seem to be a distant memory. Killian Mbappe broke his silence on the penalty dilemma as it appears Neymar and Mbappe have made peace. They were linked up thoroughly throughout the game showing the incredible qualities between them. Mbappe scores twice with two unbelievable strikes to constantly have Juventus playing on the back foot for the majority of the 90 minutes in Paris. PSG are known to be chokers in the Champions League. They needed to make a big statement against a team that had the potential to give them some problems. They were incredibly impressive, especially during the first half. They essentially could do what they want against them at home in the Champions League opener. Putting so much pressure on the Juventus defense that didn’t really put up a fight against the incredible playmakers that Paris has. Mbappé scored his two goals and, being a menace in the attacking constellation, a really efficient performance but at the same time showed true selfishness in front of goal. It wasn’t that he was wasteful, but his decision-making had some reason to be concerned when the stakes raised. Both goals hit at a high rate of difficulty. PSG, as a collective, controlled the totality of that first half, making Juventus look incredibly average throughout. In the second half, Juventus found a way back through Weston McKennie. The American comes off the bench and gives Juventus a goal when they need it. The nonsense of Captain America, Christian Pulisic, and so many people believing the delusion that he is the best player in the United States. As nonsense. Weston McKennie has played in significantly fewer Champions League games yet has significantly more Champions League moments. Hopefully, Weston McKennie and the brilliance that he presents on a regular basis will be realized both with Juventus as he still is probably their best midfielder and with the national team because of the United States goes into the world cup. Believe in Christian pool is sick is their best player. They are going to flame and implode. He just shows his qualities once again for a Juventus team that hasn’t had the best start to the season. They eventually got fired up in the second half and really tried to make things happen, but it never really occurred. Donnarumma was on his game, making the saves when he needed to. Not to mention the number of chances and playmaking we saw from PSG. However, the star of the show lies with the Brazilian. Neymar, with an unbelievable display, vision, and passing ability, set up the first goal. He already has 18 goal involvements this season. What I’ve said for a long time is I would take a healthy Neymar over any player in the world. It is clear that he is the best player in the world. His performance is impact and the way he absolutely ran riot tonight in Paris in the Champions League opener. There’s not a player on the planet that has played at a higher level than Neymar this season. I understand that some people find him. Unlikable, but it cannot be denied that Neymar is the absolute best player in the world at the moment. Just take a look at what he did in this game. The level of magic and playmaking we saw all game long. Look at the way Juventus defensively was so disoriented. Confused and frustrated. The facial expression says it all. Having to deal with Neymar for 90 minutes is an absolute nightmare, and that was proven to be the truth. It was mbappe goal, but it was Neymar’s show in Paris as they get off to a brilliant start to their Champions League journey. It’s going to take a lot to potentially kill the narrative as champions league chokers and win the Champions League this season. It is a mountain of a challenge, but at a certain point, Neymar and company are just going to want to shut people up. No one will pick them to win it because of their past history. But ultimately, this PSG team may fly under the radar because of it, which could, in the end, be their greatest strength. It is one game, but it is an outstanding start for PSG and the Champions League. They’ve been cooking this season, but they do have the team that can do in the Champions League. We’ll see later in this competition if they have the mental muscles to overcome the adversity and reputation of PSG. If the ambition is reached, Neymar will be the overwhelming favorite for the ball and door in 2023. In fact, he probably already is. PSG got tested in second half, but they dominated in Paris to start with the new campaign.