Sorry Celts humbled in Paris mismatch
Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic side were outclassed by Paris St-Germain (photo: SNS Group)
Paris St-Germain 7, Celtic 1
Parc des Princes
Celtic were taught another harsh footballing lesson by Paris St-Germain, as the tournament favourites ran riot in the French capital.
Brendan Rodgers’ side crashed 5-0 to their star-studded opponents at Parkhead and it was another Paris mis-match with Craig Gordon shipping seven goals on this occasion.
Moussa Dembele gave the Glasgow side a shock first-minute lead in the Parc des Princes but the dream start quickly turned into a nightmare. A Neymar double and strikes from Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe had the hosts cruising with just 35 minutes on the clock.
A further three goals in a five-minute spell after the break had Celtic reeling, Cavani’s stunning volley sandwiched by efforts from Marco Verratti and Dani Alves.
Celtic may be sweeping all before them on the domestic scene but their inability to retain possession against top-class teams again proved their undoing.
Rodgers admitted afterwards the scoreline was a ‘sore one’ and conceded the French team are on a different level to his Scottish champions.
“Sometimes you just have to take your hat off in terms of the quality,” he said. “Our players gave absolutely everything.
“We tried to limit the damage in the second half and I thought we did that. I’m not sure what else we could do defensively other than not make mistakes.
“This game was a strange one because there were lots of moments where we were very good, I felt.
“You have to admire their quality. We gave the ball away a couple of times in poor areas of the field and had a spell in the first half where we conceded three goals, which takes the game away from us.
“But in the second half, we had a couple of wee half chances, but they always threaten with the quality they have and scored three goals in the second half that were outstanding.
“I was proud of the players in terms of everything they put into the game. The lessons at this level are you can’t give away cheap goals, and the ball is everything.
“I said to the players afterwards, you’ve come here to play the best of the best, I’d be very surprised if they don’t make the final of this competition with the sheer quality they have.”
There was more positive news for Celtic elsewhere in the group with Bayern Munich defeating Anderlecht 2-1 in Brussels.
That result means Celtic remain in pole position to finish third in the group with just one game remaining and they will qualify for the Europa League if they avoid a heavy defeat against the Belgians in Glasgow on 5 December.
Rodgers must hope his players can bounce back quickly from the mauling, with Celtic taking on Motherwell in the final of the League Cup on Sunday afternoon.
PSG – Neymar (9, 22), Cavani (28, 79), Mbappe-Lottin (35), Verratti (75), Alves (80).
Celtic – Dembele (1).
Anderlecht 1, Bayern Munich 2
Basel 1, Manchester United 0
Qarabag FK 0, Chelsea 4