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The German coach used an unusual metaphor to describe his team’s situation in the competition
Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel insisted the French giants have achieved nothing after raising their hopes of qualifying for the Champions League by defeating Manchester United 3-1.
A double from Neymar and a goal from Marquinhos put United’s progression to the round of 16 on hold, while last season’s runner-up PSG took control of their own destiny heading into the sixth and final matchday of the Group H.
Neymar opened the scoring in the sixth minute at Old Trafford on Wednesday before United star Marcus Rashford scored in his third consecutive Champions League appearance against PSG.
After Anthony Martial squandered a great opportunity and former PSG striker Edinson Cavani hit the crossbar, it all worked out like a pearl for United, who watched Marquinhos pass the ball over the line with 21 minutes to go and saw Fred received a second yellow card moments later.
Neymar added shine to the scoreboard in the first minute of stoppage time when PSG joined United and RB Leipzig with nine points with one game remaining – Tuchel’s side only need a draw against Istanbul Basaksehir to secure a spot in the round of 16.
But Tuchel urged calm after the game, saying RMC Sport: “Almost qualified, not qualified. Almost pregnant, not pregnant. That does not exist, I will not let a single boy think that everything is done.”
“We have made a big step forward, but I am not going to let a single man think that we are already qualified.
“We need to take the last step and for that, we will have to play with the same mentality, the same fire and the same spirit.”
PSG have won their last two away games against English rivals in all competitions (both against United); He had only won one of his first 10 such visits before (tied four and lost five).
Since their Champions League debut in 2013, only Cristiano Ronaldo (79), Robert Lewandowski (60) and Lionel Messi (59) have more goals in the competition than Neymar (38).
Neymar’s double in Manchester was the Brazilian’s first goal in his six Champions away games against English teams.
“We can be proud tonight,” said PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi. RMC Sport. “We showed the real PSG, a real team fighting for the Champions League. It was important for us, this was a decisive match.
“We needed to show that we are always present in the great moments. I am proud of my players. It was difficult, it was a game that everyone wanted to win, I think we created goals.
“Now we have to continue, we are not classified yet, that is our goal. We also have the Ligue 1 game with Montpellier.”