•PSG looked sharp and focused in the first half of the Champions League semi-final first leg and took the lead when Marquinhos headed home from Angel Di Maria’s corner.
•But they lost control of the game to a transformed City side after the break, conceding two goals and receiving a red card in the space of 14 minutes.
Paris St Germain were “emotional and aggressive in a stupid way”, contributing to their second-half capitulation in Wednesday’s 2-1 Champions League defeat at home to Manchester City, former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said.
PSG looked sharp and focused in the first half of the Champions League semi-final first leg and took the lead when Marquinhos headed home from Angel Di Maria’s corner.
But they lost control of the game to a transformed City side after the break, conceding two goals and receiving a red card in the space of 14 minutes. Frenchman Wenger said PSG were guilty of retreating into their shell.
“I must say in the second half PSG were protective and not progressive any more,” Wenger told beIN SPORTS. “Is it because they were not physically capable?
“After 1-1, they collapsed completely. They become emotional and aggressive in a stupid way.”
Wenger said PSG’s patchy domestic form— the French champions lie in second spot, one point behind leaders Lille with four games to play —had affected their confidence.
“What was interesting is that you could see that when it was 1-1, PSG mentally collapsed,” Wenger added. “This is the consequence of the team losing eight games in the league. This has an impact.
“When it’s 1-1 the team knows they have lost many games, they carry that. It’s not like the season before when they were unbeatable in the league.
“You could see the confidence dropped considerably and the mental impact when Man City equalised, for the semi-final of a Champions League, was too big.”
PSG host Lens on Saturday, before travelling to Manchester for the return leg against City.
Meanwhile, Paris St Germain will need to maintain their intensity levels throughout the game if they are to overturn a 2-1 deficit against Manchester City in their Champions League semi-final second leg next Tuesday, boss Mauricio Pochettino said.
“We were the better team in the first half but then we conceded two goals we normally don’t concede,” coach Mauricio Pochettino told a news conference.
“The key was that we didn’t show the same energy with the ball than in the first half,” Pochettino explained. “But we are confident that we can turn this around and approach the second leg the same way. The first half showed that we were right in our approach of the game.
“We just have to keep the same intensity with the ball. That’s what we have to improve.”
Captain Marquinhos said that PSG needed more composure. “Sometimes you have to be strategic and intelligent. We conceded two really stupid goals. These are details that will count,” he said.“Above all, we need to have personality. We have to have the mentality to win, to do whatever it takes to get through. We are very close, it’s not the time to have doubts.”
PSG will take comfort from the fact that they won their two away legs in the previous rounds, 4-1 at Barcelona in the last-16, and 3-2 at holders Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals.