Marcus Rashford repeated his late heroics against Paris St-Germain with a superb winner as Manchester United marked their return to the Champions League with a fine win at the home of last season’s beaten finalists.
Rashford’s stoppage-time penalty sealed a famous victory at the Parc des Princes 18 months ago and the England striker was again on target to ensure Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side took maximum points from their opening match in a formidable group.
The visitors had excelled in a first half which saw Bruno Fernandes stroke them ahead with a twice-taken penalty.
But the multiple French champions were far stronger and threatening in the second half and deservedly drew level when United striker Anthony Martial headed into his own net.
David de Gea had to put in a much-improved display in United’s goal, making strong saves to deny PSG’s superstar duo Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
And the sides looked set to share the points when Rashford collected a pass from substitute Paul Pogba, rolled away from a defender and fired in off the base of the post from 20 yards.
Solskjaer finds a way
Rashford’s penalty completed a stunning comeback in 2019 which all but cemented the case for Solskjaer’s temporary reign to be made permanent, turning a delighted Rio Ferdinand – the former United defender turned BT Sport pundit – into a meme in the process.
Solskjaer has not been able to maintain that blistering success since becoming full-time manager, but once again the Norwegian was able to conjure a victory against the odds.
Without captain Harry Maguire and midfielder Pogba, United played a back five – with defender Axel Tuanzebe being summoned from the wilderness and shining on his first appearance of 2020.
Twice the 22-year-old kept stride with the rapid Mbappe and made fine challenges in an impressive display.
At the other end, United’s opener came from a more familiar route – Fernandes converting a penalty after Martial was tripped. It was, remarkably, the 27th spot-kick awarded to United since the start of last season.
Fernandes, the captain on the night, actually missed for the second time in three days, but Keylor Navas was clearly off his line before the save and the video assistant referee called it back. Fernandes went the same way; the goalkeeper went the other.
PSG looked far more like their old selves after the break and United had to defend well – but Rashford was guilty of wasting a couple of chances on the counter-attack before his brilliant late winner.
More to follow.
- 24FlorenziSubstituted forDagbaat 79′minutes
- 20KurzawaSubstituted forBakkerat 86′minutes
- 21HerreraSubstituted forRafinhaat 79′minutes
- 15DaniloBooked at 84mins
- 27GueyeSubstituted forKeanat 45′minutesBooked at 90mins
- 11Di MaríaSubstituted forSarabiaat 86′minutes
- 10NeymarBooked at 34mins
- 1de Gea
- 38TuanzebeBooked at 72mins
- 39McTominayBooked at 36mins
- 27TellesSubstituted forPogbaat 67′minutes
- 18Bruno FernandesSubstituted forvan de Beekat 88′minutes
- 9MartialSubstituted forJamesat 88′minutes
- 34van de Beek
- Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz
Match ends, Paris Saint Germain 1, Manchester United 2.
Second Half ends, Paris Saint Germain 1, Manchester United 2.
Offside, Paris Saint Germain. Keylor Navas tries a through ball, but Kylian Mbappé is caught offside.
Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Danilo Pereira.
Moise Kean (Paris Saint Germain) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Moise Kean (Paris Saint Germain).
Fred (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. Neymar (Paris Saint Germain) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Pablo Sarabia.
Substitution, Manchester United. Daniel James replaces Anthony Martial.
Substitution, Manchester United. Donny van de Beek replaces Bruno Fernandes.
Goal! Paris Saint Germain 1, Manchester United 2. Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Paul Pogba.
Substitution, Paris Saint Germain. Mitchel Bakker replaces Layvin Kurzawa.
Substitution, Paris Saint Germain. Pablo Sarabia replaces Ángel Di María.
Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Colin Dagba.
Attempt blocked. Paul Pogba (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Scott McTominay.
Danilo Pereira (Paris Saint Germain) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Danilo Pereira (Paris Saint Germain).
Fred (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, Paris Saint Germain. Conceded by Victor Lindelöf.
Attempt saved. Neymar (Paris Saint Germain) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Rafinha.