Neymar, Rennes, PSG
Match Reports

PSG held by Rennes - title bid over?

Publish on 09/05/2021 at 23:02

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Paris Saint-Germain are three points behind LOSC with just six left to play for following their 1-1 draw with Stade Rennais FC, Neymar Jr.'s first-half penalty cancelled out by Serhou Guirassy's second-half header.

Stade Rennais FC 1-1 Paris Saint-Germain

 

THE MATCH

 

There was a minute's silence before kick-off for former PSG and Rennes goalkeeper Christophe Revault, who passed away this week at the age of 49. Alfred Gomis, one of his successors on the Rennes side, was the first to see his goal threatened once play got underway, Ander Herrera firing just wide of the Senegalese shot-stopper's near post (11'). Herrera got the break of the ball at the edge of the box again soon after, and this time found the target, but Gomis got down well to keep his effort at bay (16'). Guirassy steered a Jérémy Doku shot beyond Navas just inside the half-hour, but the goal was ruled out for offside (29'). Danilo then bundled through the back of Guirassy, but referee Ruddy Buquet waved the big striker's claim for what would have been a free-kick - and potentially a red card for PSG's last man - away (36'). Moise Kean also found the target in the first half, heading home Colin Dagba's cross (39'), but the young right-back had drifted out of play before his delivery. PSG would carry a 1-0 lead into the interval, though. Nayef Aguerd fouled Layvin Kurzawa in the box and Neymar stepped up to stroke home his eighth goal of the campaign (45'+6).

 

Rennes reply

 

Rennes have been in the hunt for European qualification once again this season, and they gave as good as they got in the second half. Doku forced Navas into a save (47') before Faitout Maouassa saw a shot deflect narrowly wide for a corner (52'). A moment of absolute class very nearly put the game to bed at the other end. Julian Draxler pulled a difficult Neymar pass out of the sky, and a few keepy-uppies later he dragged a shot narrowly wide, to the disappointment of PSG fans and neutral football-lovers alike (55'). Kean then curled an effort over Gomis's crossbar after working some space for himself on the edge of the Rennes area (60'). Flavien Tait attempted to keep PSG honest with a fine side-footed effort from range which looked destined for the bottom corner, but Navas did brilliantly to turn it around his post (67'). An equaliser was Rennes' minutes later, though. Guirassy climbed highest to meet Benjamin Bourigeaud's corner and powered his ninth goal of the campaign, via the woodwork, beyond a helpless Navas (70'). PSG's frustration spilled over when Presnel Kimpembe was sent off for a rash challenge on Doku (88') and it ended 1-1.

 

THE PLAYER: Serhou Guirassy

 

Rennes always looked capable of returning fire after Neymar's opening penalty, and Guirassy was a large part - quite literally - of the reason why. The hulking 25-year-old kept PSG centre-backs Marquinhos and Kimpembe pinned throughout, and was rewarded with his equalising goal. A former France youth international, if he ultimately fires Rennes back into Europe, Guinea will surely be tempted to make another bid for his services at international level.

 

THE STAT: 3

 

PSG trail Lille by three points at the top of Ligue 1 Uber Eats. A 10th French top-flight title could yet be theirs, but they need les Dogues to slip up in their final two games. PSG have Stade de Reims and Stade Brestois left to play; Lille's opponents are AS Saint-Étienne and Angers SCO. There is still time, but it's running out.