Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi were the star performers as Paris Saint-Germain put Nantes to the sword with a convincing 3-0 win.
Paris Saint-Germain defeated Nantes for the second time this season, winning 3-0 on the night. Christophe Galtier’s men were hungry from the word go and took early control of the game.
They did not relinquish it all night and were comfortable winners in the end. PSG made a few changes to their starting lineup, but their intensity did not waver. The only setback on the night was an early injury for summer signing Vitinha that earned Fabio an early shower. Down to ten men, it was defence first for the home side.
Lionel Messi ran the show in the final third and assisted Kylian Mbappe on either side of the half-time break. The brace put PSG in a commanding position, and Nantes appeared resigned to their situation.
Substitute Nuno Mendes came on in the second half before going on to score his side’s third in the 68th minute. Neymar could have added to the tally late on but was unable to show off his clinical best. All in all, apart from Vitinha’s injury, it was a good night at the office for Christophe Galtier and his men. The Hard Tackle looks at how the PSG players fared on the night.
Gianluigi Donnarumma: 6/10
The Italian had little to do on the night and made just one save all game. PSG dominated the proceedings, leaving their goalkeeper seeking a hobby to keep himself occupied. Donnarumma’s passing was also decent on the night as he maintained a second successive clean sheet.
— Gianluigi Donnarumma (@gigiodonna1) September 3, 2022
Presnel Kimpembe: 6/10
The Frenchman returned after an injury layoff against Toulouse and seamlessly stepped into the playing XI. He made use of his physicality to great effect and more often than not came out on top in duels. Kimpembe also got forward when he could and was confident to make long passes from the back.
The Brazilian defender was a solid presence in defence and organised his backline with intelligence and poise. Marquinhos was not afraid to get stuck in when needed, and the PSG captain often used his physicality to outmuscle the Nantes attackers.
Danilo Pereira: 6/10
The defensive utility man stepped in for Sergio Ramos and was night on impeccable. A no-nonsense style of defending was matched with confidence on the ball with Pereira ready to get forward and pass decisively when needed.
Achraf Hakimi: 6/10
The Moroccan international returned to the lineup after being handed a breather midweek. It was not his best night in a PSG jersey as the final ball was often lacking. Hakimi got forward well and found himself in promising positions, but proved incapable of making the advantage count.
Marco Verratti: 6.5/10
It was probably one of the Italian’s more underwhelming performances this season. While he had spells of anonymity, his presence alone ensured that PSG held the initiative in the middle of the park. His intelligent movement helped snuff out any Nantes counter and his vision for the pass opened up avenues of attackers for Messi and Mbappe. Verratti was also ready to put in a challenge and earned himself a yellow card in the second half.
The summer signing started off well but was taken off in the first half following a rough tackle that earned Fabio a red card. PSG will hope that Vitinha will not be out for too long.
Juan Bernat: 6/10
The Spaniard scored last time out and was rewarded with a starting spot on the night. While he showed intent and hunger, it did not quite translate into an effective final product. He was eventually taken off at half-time.
Pablo Sarabia: 7/10
Sarabia replaced Neymar in the playing XI, giving the Brazilian a rest ahead of the UEFA Champions League ties. Sarabia made the most of the opportunity and looked intent on finding the back of the net. While he did eventually fail to do so, the Spanish international had a few pops at goal and linked up well with Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
Lionel Messi: 9/10
The Argentine turned on the style on the night and orchestrated an imposing PSG frontline with immaculate ease. He produced several dribbles and was not afraid to have regular shots at goal. While Messi did not appear to have his shooting boots on, he still managed to earn two assists, both for Mbappe.
20 – Fastest players to reach 20 assists in Ligue 1 since Opta began analysing the competition (2006/07):
🥇Angel Di Maria (31 matches)
🥈🆕Lionel Messi (32)
— OptaJean (@OptaJean) September 3, 2022
Kylian Mbappe: 9/10
The Frenchman was clinical when presented with opportunities and made a difference on the night. His pace and ability to run into channels made him difficult to pin down for the Nantes defence. Mbappe continues to improve and will only get better as the season wears on.
Renato Sanches: 6/10
The Portuguese international replaced the injured Vitinha in the 33rd minute and quickly helped Verratti gain control of the midfield. He kept things simple and was good on the ball. Sanches is yet to hit top gear and could be in line for a start given Vitinha’s predicament.
Nuno Mendes: 7/10
The PSG left-backs have made it a habit of coming off the bench to score this week. It was Mendes’s turn this time around as he scored PSG’s third of the night in the 68th minute. The youngster looked sharp and is a clear upgrade over Bernat.
Sergio Ramos: 6/10
The veteran replaced Verratti in the 63rd minute and immediately earned himself a yellow card. It was his standout moment of the night.
The Brazilian came on for Mbappe in the 63rd minute and continued from where he left off. He was lively in the final third and linked up well with Messi. Neymar struck the bar in the lead-up to Mendes’s strike and will take some stopping this season.
Hugo Ekitike: 6/10
The youngster came on for Sarabia in the second half and looked eager.