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PSG travelled to the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday for their second-leg last-16 clash, with Kylian Mbappe securing a crucial late winner in the first leg last month.
Mbappe, who has been linked with Madrid, made an impact in the Champions League again after firing PSG into a first-half lead with a clinical finish past Thibaut Courtois.
PSG missed an opportunity to double their advantage in first-half injury time, with Verratti pouncing on the loose ball in the Madrid box after Neymar was dispossessed.
The 29-year-old Italian maestro lofted the ball to the back post rather than rolling it into the path of an onrushing Messi, who was being tracked back by Federico Valverde.
🎥 Messi getting angry at Veratti, after not passing to him pic.twitter.com/jZzucou0Su— Barca Eleven (@BarcaEleven_) March 9, 2022
Messi used to score like 20 goals a season from this run alone, now he has to scream at Verratti for not playing the pass. pic.twitter.com/ffXM2Ycgym— John Muller (@johnspacemuller) March 9, 2022
PSG’s attack amounted to nothing as Courtois easily saved a weak attacking header from Mbappe, but eagle-eyed fans spotted Messi’s telling reaction to Verratti.
Footage has since made the rounds on social media, with Messi pointing to the floor in frustration at his PSG teammate for not passing him the ball.
Both Verratti and Messi could later be seen leaving the pitch together at half-time, with the Barcelona legend wrapping his arm around his neck and leaning in for a hug.
PSG’s 2-0 aggregate lead would collapse in the second half after a sensational hat-trick from Karim Benzema, who fired Madrid to a memorable 3-1 win on the night.
Mauricio Pochettino admitted that he was “really disappointed” and insisted that Benzema’s equaliser “changed” the complexion of the Champions League tie.
“The first [Benzema] goal completely changed the game,” the PSG boss said.
“For an hour, we were better than Real Madrid. The atmosphere changed in the stadium. We made some mistakes after that, we can’t say we didn’t.
“The worst feeling is that we were the better side, but we lost the tie in 10 minutes.
“Paris Saint-Germain have been chasing the Champions League for a number of years now.
“I’m really disappointed, upset -- but these things can happen. The next few weeks are not going to be easy.”
Featured Image Credit: BT Sport/Twitter
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