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PSG 2-1 Liverpool talking points: From Reds' away form to Marco Verratti's bad tackle
Juan Bernat and Neymar score for PSG, with James Milner penalty a consolation
Last Updated: 28/11/18 11:00pm
Liverpool were beaten 2-1 at PSG in the Champions League on Wednesday. Here, we pick out the talking points from the clash in Paris...
Liverpool made to wait
And so it goes down to the final game. Liverpool could have sealed their place in the knockout phase with a win in Paris but they now need to beat Napoli 1-0 or by two or more goals at Anfield in their final group game on December 11 to reach the last 16.
There are positives. It's in their hands, it's sure to be a special night at Anfield and if PSG slip up at Red Star, Liverpool could even top the group. But it will be a far from easy task for last year's Champions League finalists.
Napoli have only been beaten twice this season and, in Lorenzo Insigne, Dries Mertens and Marek Hamsik, have the attacking players capable of scoring an away goal which would make Liverpool's job even harder. Liverpool will have to be at their best.
Away form worries
At least Liverpool's decider will be on home turf. A recurring issue for them in the Champions League this season has been their struggles on the road, and once again on Wednesday, they were sluggish starters and far from their thrilling best.
Away day blues
Liverpool have lost all three Champions League group stage away games for the first time in the competition.
In defeats at Napoli and Red Star, Liverpool were not able to impose their fast, free-flowing football on their opponents and it was the same case in Paris, with James Milner's first-half injury-time penalty coming against the run of play when PSG were threatening to run away with the contest.
In the second half Liverpool - who were sent out early after the break - improved but still lacked the cut and thrust which became their hallmark on their charge to the final last term. Mohamed Salah was muted, ineffective Roberto Firmino taken off and the midfield trio of Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum and James Milner too often by-passed.
At the final whistle, Milner's penalty was their solitary shot on target.
It hasn't been an issue in the Premier League, with draws at Arsenal and Chelsea the only points dropped by Liverpool on the road. But in Europe, Jurgen Klopp's side have been unable to find their rhythm. That will have to change if they do make it into the knockout phase.
Neymar, Mbappe and Cavani electric
Rather than Liverpool, it was PSG delivering the first-half blitz, with their thrilling trio of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani lighting up the Parc des Princes with their rapid counter-attacks.
Juan Bernat profited from their speed, skill - and good fortune - for the opener, converting a deflected shot after Neymar had fed Mbappe and his cross was blocked in the direction of the defender.
But PSG's front three already have 30 goals between them in Ligue 1 this term and it wasn't long before one of them got on the scoresheet themselves. Neymar started the move and finished it, exchanging passes with Mbappe down the left flank, and then, when Cavani's close-range shot was saved by Alisson, converting the rebound for his 31st Champions League goal. That makes him the top-scoring Brazilian in the competition.
Neymar No 1 Brazilian
Neymar netted his 31st Champions League goal against Liverpool and is now the top-scoring Brazilian in the competition's history, overtaking Kaka (30).
The Liverpool 'keeper had snuffed out a similar move moments earlier and at that point PSG's three stars were irresistible.
In total, Neymar was fouled six times as Liverpool tried to get a hold on him and while they were able to reduce the effectiveness of the three attackers after the break, it had been a brilliant example of the talent the French giants have up front. They'll be a real threat in the knockout stage.
Reds' referee complaints
Liverpool's frustrations were increased by some of the refereeing by Szymon Marciniak.
It took the fifth official behind the goal to award Liverpool's first-half penalty for Angel Di Maria's clear foul on Sadio Mane, when the referee had pointed for a corner. And despite PSG's theatrics, Liverpool finished the game with six players booked.
But perhaps the decisive moment was the decision to only show Marco Verratti a yellow card for his challenge on Joe Gomez midway through the opening period.
Midfield playmaker Verratti was at his wonderful best for PSG's opener, swapping passes with Di Maria in the centre of the pitch to carve through Liverpool's midfield before threading the ball through for Mbappe.
But he produced an ugly tackle on Gomez at 1-0, going over the top of the ball and putting his studs into the defender's calf. Gomez didn't make much of it but another official could easily have shown a red card - and that would have changed the momentum of the game. PSG were 2-0 up shortly afterwards.