Paris Saint-Germain secured their place in the Champions League knockout stages following a nail-biting 1-1 draw against Group F winners Borussia Dortmund. The match, played on Wednesday, was a crucial final group encounter for both teams.
Despite numerous opportunities, the first half remained goalless, setting the stage for a dramatic second half. Dortmund, who had already qualified for the knockout stages, opened the scoring in the 51st minute through Karim Adeyemi.
He capitalized on a PSG error outside the box, slotting the ball in off the post. The visitors, however, were quick to respond, with Warren Zaire-Emery leveling the score just five minutes later, following an assist from Kylian Mbappe.
Dortmund finished top of the group with 11 points, while PSG secured second place on eight points, tied with third-placed AC Milan. Milan, despite their 2-1 win over Newcastle United, will continue in the Europa League, leaving Newcastle with a total of five points.
Marquinhos Reflects on PSG’s Journey and Future Challenges
PSG defender Marquinhos acknowledged the team's ambitions and the reality of their situation. "The primary objective was to go after first place in the group, but we have to remain realistic," he stated.Emphasizing the importance of qualifying under any circumstances, Marquinhos also highlighted the need for PSG to prepare thoroughly for the challenges ahead, especially given their previous struggles in away matches during the group stage.
The game itself was a showcase of missed opportunities and near-misses from both sides. Lee Kang-in and Mbappe created early chances for PSG, with Mbappe's effort being notably cleared by Niklas Süle. Bradley Barcola hit the post for PSG, and Randal Kolo Muani missed two key one-on-ones against Dortmund keeper Gregor Kobel.
Dortmund, meanwhile, failed to capitalize on several chances, including Marco Reus's volley, which was skillfully saved by PSG keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma. Adeyemi had a significant miss before halftime but redeemed himself with the opening goal in the second half.
The match reached its peak intensity when Mbappe appeared to have snatched a late winner, only to be ruled marginally offside following a VAR review.