Lionel Messi delivered when Paris Saint-Germain needed him most during their Champions League win over RB Leipzig on Tuesday.
Two goals for the Argentinean in the space of seven minutes in the second half gave Mauricio Pochettino’s side a 3-2 win.
Critics of Messi were quick to react to his relatively slow start to life at PSG – by his own high standards – but he recalled that those who doubt him do so at their peril.
Kylian MbappÃ©The opening opener was called off by Andre Silva before Nordi Mukiele reversed the game in the 57th minute.
With Manchester City already showing their intention with a 5-1 win over Club Brugge in the previous kick-off, PSG couldn’t afford to lose any points in their fight to finish top of Group A.
Fortunately, they had a player who could soon be celebrating a seventh Ballon d’Or on the pitch.
Messi saved PSG
Messi was calm in the first half but came to life after Mukiele put the visitors ahead.
The 34-year-old made it 2-2 in the 67th minute, capitalizing after Leipzig lost the ball in their own half.
Shortly after, PSG received a penalty following Mohamed Simakan’s challenge on Mbappe.
Messi had the audacity to attempt a panenka penalty that knocked out Leipzig goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi.
Messi seemed immune to the pressure as he casually pulled the ball towards the net.
PSG goalkeeper loved Messi’s penalty
Parc des Princes erupted and a man who couldn’t contain his glee was PSG’s own security guard.
Images have surfaced of a member of the security team celebrating Messi’s penalty as professionally as he could, giving a little punch and shaking the rope designed to keep fans out of the pitch.
Messi gave up his hat trick
In fairness to the security guard, who is clearly a PSG or a fan of Messi, he did well not to lose him completely.
It was a fantastic goal of the former Barcelona star – his third in the Champions League for PSG – and he gave up the chance to add another to his tally.
PSG won another penalty in added time, but Messi allowed Mbappe to take it, forgoing the chance to score a hat-trick.
However, the French striker whipped his effort over the crossbar.
We would have liked to see the security guard’s reaction to that as well.
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