Paris Saint-Germain got their ailing Champions League campaign back on track with a hard-fought 1-0 win over RB Leipzig, which leaves Group H on a knife edge with two games to play.
Both sides probed with intent in the early exchanges but it was PSG who went ahead after a mistimed challenge from Marcel Sabitzer felled Angel Di Maria just inside the box. Neymar stepped up and stroked the penalty just out of Peter Gulacsi's reach.
A block from Marquinhos and a fine save from Keylor Navas prevented Leipzig from replying instantly, while in the dying seconds of the first half Emil Forsberg volleyed over after fine work from Dani Olmo.
PSG were looking to counter and the gameplan almost paid off, but a fine tackle from Dayot Upamecano stopped Kylian Mbappe from latching onto Neymar's square ball.
After the break, Leipzig continued to dominate play but clear-cut chances were few and far between. Forsberg missed another chance to volley home with poor timing, before Yussuf Poulsen mistimed a chance of his own.
PSG defended deeper and deeper, with Marquinhos making countless clearances. Though they barely saw the ball, a fine rearguard action from the hosts saw them over the finish line, and into second place in their group.
- Fernandes hits double to steer Man Utd to win over Basaksehir
- Braithwaite fires much-changed Barcelona into last 16
- Giroud strikes late to send Chelsea into last 16
TALKING POINT – Who needs flare when you can just get stuck in?
This was a peculiar win from PSG, who have spent a king's ransom on attacking talent. But the likes of Neymar and Mbappe were turned into willing runners, pressing relentlessly high up the pitch and looking to counter. Behind them, defensive midfielder and the back line threw themselves into tackles and blocks, with the hosts happy to cede possession.
A common criticism of PSG is that they can't win ugly, but win ugly they certainly did here. There's more than one way to win a match and this was a game in which nothing less than victory would do. It is rare that they will have less than 40% possession at home. It relieves the pressure after a poor start to the season at home and in Europe and their Champions League fate is back in their hands.
MAN OF THE MATCH – Marquinhos (PSG)
Having been thrust into the heart of defence thanks to injuries and suspensions, the PSG skipper summed up his side's committed performance, clearing the ball to safety, making constant blocks and challenges. Leipzig dominated the ball and the territory and it is telling that they did not miss any huge chances. That was down to the defensive discipline that Marquinhos summed up.
PSG: Navas 7, Florenzi 6, Diallo 6, Marquinhos 8, Bakker 6, Herrera 6, Danilo 7, Paredes 7, Di Maria 6, Neymar 7, Mbappe 7. Subs: Rafinha 6, Verratti N/A, Kean N/A, Sarabia N/A
Leipzig: Gulacsi 7, Mukiele 6, Konta 6, Upamecano 7, Angelino 5, Haidara 7, Sabitzer 7, Olmo 6, Forsberg 6, Nkunku 7, Poulsen 6. Subs: Orban 6, Kluivert 7, Solorth 6
10' - PENALTY! PSG have a great opportunity to go ahead from the spot as Di Maria is felled by Sabitzer after Leipzig give the ball away carelessly... No VAR check for it but it looked soft.
11' - GOAL!! Neymar takes an age to run up to the ball and strokes it into the bottom corner with ease. It's 1-0 to PSG and the Brazilian has his first Champions League goal of the season.
12' - Close! Sabitzer almost makes instent amends as a Haidara cross is chested into his path but Marquinhos blocks it behind for a corner!
13' - Great save! The corner comes in from Nkunku and finds Poulsen, but his header is tipped over by Navas on the stretch.
39' - What. A. Tackle. PSG counter, with Neymar sprinting down the left. He only has Mbappe for company and looks for the Frenchman, who would have a virtual tap in were it not for a fantastic challenge from Upamecano.
45+1' - Close! Forsberg could do better here but it's a tough chance. Brilliant work down the right from Olmo, who picks out the Swede, but his volley goes over.
49' - Close! Haidara with some fine work down the right and he picks out Forsberg, who volleys at the near post but can't squeeze it past Navas. Another good chance for the Swede.
84' - Welcome to the party, Marco Verratti. He's barely on the pitch a minute and he has already picked up a yellow card for a horrible tackle on Nkunku. He should have walked, but for some reason there's no VAR check.