Naive optimism is in a Celtic fans DNA. And I am not unlike any other.
Thinking against PSG and their oil riddled millions I wasn’t too impressed before kick off. Yes of course I knew of their world record transfer breaking signing Neymar in the summer. Then they signed a supposed €160 million 18 year old striker on loan from their biggest rivals Monaco,who pipped them to top spot in Ligue 1 the previous season. But all of this is just hear say as I had never watched them since Zlatan played there.
In my opinion we showed the superstars of Paris too much respect from the get go. Fans going days early to get selfies with the team and the official Celtic twitter creaming their geeen and white onesies at the prospect of even breathing the same air as some of these multi millionaires. Don’t get me wrong I completely understand the angle they have went for but it portrays that we are in awe of this team who weren’t even founded when we won the European Cup in 67.
The big talking point of the night was Anthony Ralston getting a start at right back. Not an issue for me. The boys a unit and a product of the youth system. A lot better choice than having Nir Bitton anywhere near the back 4.
The game started off as we all expected with PSG on the attack. It took about 15 minutes for them to break the deadlock but it wasn’t without contraversy as Scott Sinclair was fouled in the build up but nothing was given. Neymar got past Ralston and scored. Mbappe got the second and then Jozo appeared to lose his cool and pulled back Cavani to concede a penalty round about the 40 minute mark which Cavani made no mistake with to make it 3-0 going into half time. Griffiths did have a free kick worth mentioning from about 45 yards out and with his new found confidence from the internationals against England he made Areola in the PSG goal make a good save with the ball looking like it would end up in the top bin.
At half time I was pondering what had actually happened but reflecting upon it, PSG are just different class. Very similar to the way Barcelona were when Xavi and Iniesta were in their prime.
Second half starts and I’m just hoping for a better showing. Add more fight, more desire. They certainly did that and got tore in about them. Rogic came on for Armstrong and did make a difference as an out ball. A couple of chances came our way but we were running out of steam. Paddy Roberts was getting doubled up on and even trebled up on at times. His frustration was clear for everyone to see when he got subbed.
It was 4-0 in 82 mins as a hard cross from Draxler deflected off Lustig. It was 5-0 minutes later when nothing but a world class header from Cavani found its way into the opposite side of Craig Gordon’s net.
So that brings an end to Celtics biggest European home defeat in history. On a whole we were humped. But this team in my opinion are one of the best I have seen in a very very long time and expect them to be in the last 4 of the competition minimum.
We gave them far too much respect to begin with but they certainly have the ability to match their egos. Fair play to PSG.
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