News, Culture & Society

Champions League: Lionel Messi handed 4/10 by L’Equipe after ‘hit and miss’ display vs Man City

Lionel Messi is handed a FOUR out of ten by the savage L’Equipe after his ‘hit and miss’ display in defeat to Man City… while ‘swept away’ Mauricio Pochettino gets a four too amid speculation to the Man United job


Lionel Messi incurred the wrath of famously savage French paper L’Equipe after his off-colour display against Manchester City on Wednesday night – calling the Argentine ‘hit and miss’ in the 2-1 defeat.

City secured top spot in their Champions League Group A to move into the last 16 of the competition by beating one of the favourites to win the trophy, as goals from Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus saw them come from behind after Kylian Mbappe’s opener.

But for all of PSG’s attacking talents, they offered little to threaten Pep Guardiola’s men after going ahead – registering just two shots on target – with Messi singled out for a nearly anonymous performance as he was handed a four out of ten by L’Equipe.

Lionel Messi was handed a four out of ten by L’Equipe after his display against Manchester City

The French outlet were unimpressed with Messi and fellow attackers Neymar and Mbappe'

The French outlet were unimpressed with Messi and fellow attackers Neymar and Mbappe’

The French outlet are notoriously tough with their ratings and were left unimpressed by the star, claiming he was ‘overwhelmed by defenders’ at the Etihad.

‘Yes, he delivers the almost decisive pass to Mbappe [for the goal], yes, he initiates some situations by his work as a pivot between the lines, but we are entitled to expect more [from] a six-time Ballon d’Or [winner],’ the paper said. ‘In the [build up] of the game, he must [do] more. 

‘Some of his [final third] choices were hit and miss. More worrying, sometimes, he [looked] overwhelmed against defenders.’

Mbappe and Neymar were not spared from criticism either. While L’Equipe handed the French forward an ultra rare 10/10 after his four-goal haul against Kazakhstan earlier this month, they were nowhere near as generous here – giving him a five.

‘The Parisian striker has long been untraceable,’ it added. ‘He had to move – to the right in particular – to be served. Sometimes rough in 1 v 1, he [was] imprecise during his duel against Ederson. In the period of Parisian domination, when the ‘MNM’ (Messie, Neymar Mbappe) finally appeared, Mbappe made some differences.’

Mauricio Pochettino, meanwhile, was accused of having his tactics 'swept away' as he continues to be linked to the Manchester United job

Mauricio Pochettino, meanwhile, was accused of having his tactics ‘swept away’ as he continues to be linked to the Manchester United job

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk