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Ronald Koeman paid tribute to Kylian Mbappé and admitted that Barcelona must accept that Paris Saint-Germain have a “more complete team” after their defeat in the Champions League at the Camp Nou.
Last season’s runners-up PSG took a dominant lead in the round of 16 tie thanks to hat-trick hero Mbappé, who drove in an impressive 4-1 demolition on Tuesday.
Lionel Messi, who has been closely linked to PSG, opened the scoring with a penalty before the French visitors took control courtesy of Mbappé and Moise Kean.
Ligue 1 champions PSG edged and outscored Barça to set foot in the Champions League quarter-finals before the return leg on March 10.
Barça coach Koeman acknowledged that PSG’s superiority was evident and admitted that the agitated LaLiga giants have a long way to go to compete with Mauricio Pochettino’s men.
“They were superior, they were very efficient, in particular thanks to Mbappé,” Koeman said.
“The first half was balanced. With 1-0, Ousmane [Dembele] I had a good chance. In the second half of the game we had some defensive problems.
“They showed that they were superior, with the ball and above all physically.
“They had a more complete team than ours. We have to accept it and keep improving. We know what can happen. This team is ahead of us. “
– UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) February 16, 2021
Barça rallied from a 4-0 deficit in the first leg to knock PSG out of the Champions League with a 6-1 win in the second leg in 2017.
‘The Comeback’ or ‘The Comeback’ has become a European football legend, but Koeman has little hope for a similar change at Parc des Princes.
“Losing 1-4 is very difficult. There is very little chance of going back, ”he said.
“We lack things to be at the best level, especially in the Champions League.”
Barcelona have never progressed in a European tie after losing their first home game.
It is the first time that Barcelona have lost consecutive home games in the Champions League / European Cup and the first time they have conceded three or more goals in consecutive home games in a European competition.
Meanwhile, Barça have conceded four goals in a knockout match at home in the Champions League and the second in the European Cup / Champions League after a 4-0 defeat against Dinamo Kiev in November 1997.