A selfless Lionel Messi passed up the chance to score his first PSG hat-trick by handing a penalty to a teammate, only for him to miss
Lionel Messipassed up the opportunity to score his first Paris Saint Germainhat-trick on Tuesday.
- The Argentine scored twice against RB Leipzig but then let Kylian Mbappe take a penalty, only for him to miss.
A selfless Lionel Messi passed up the opportunity to score his first Paris Saint Germain hat-trick as the Ligue 1 giant beat RB Leipzig 3-2 in the Champions League on Tuesday.
Kylian Mbappe put PSG ahead in just the ninth minute, before goals either side of half-time from Andre Silva and Nordi Mukiele turned the tide in the German side's favor.
Messi then bagged a brace - the first a simple tap-in from a rebounded shot and the second a superb panenka penalty - to win the game for the host.
The Argentine star could have had a third in extra-time when PSG was awarded a second penalty, however he instead chose to step aside and let Mbappe take the spot kick, passing up an opportunity for what would have been a first hat-trick for his new team.
The Frenchman blasted the penalty over the bar, leaving Messi to rue his own generosity.
Mbappe, who is PSG's regular penalty taker in the absence of Neymar and has scored each of his last 11 spot kicks, said he told Messi to take the first penalty.
"It's normal, it's respect," the 22-year-old said after the match. "He's the best player in the world, it's a privilege he plays with us, I've always said it. There's a penalty, he takes it, period.
"For the second, he said, 'Take it'."
PSG was far from its best on the night, and was largely outclassed by Leipzig, which dominated much of the game.
A lack of killer instinct in the final third, however, cost Jesse Marsch's Leipzig side, which was punished by the ruthless Mbappe and Messi.
"We don't need to say anything more about the quality of Kylian and Leo," said PSG manager Mauricio Pochettino of the duo. "In games when you are struggling to find solutions as a team, that is why you need players of their class."
Messi has now scored three goals in three Champions League matches for PSG since moving from FC Barcelona during the summer, however he is still yet to open his account in the French top flight.
- Not hard, not soft, the earliest dino eggs may have been of a 'leathery' texture to protect against damage: study
- Don't need to go big to go home: Australia is turning to sustainable 'tiny houses' to fix their housing crisis!
- Affordability levels to buy homes hit in last 2 years; to improve in 2024 on likely repo rate cut: JLL
- Carbon tax turns into climate fight at COP28
- Market to focus on macro data, global trends: Analysts