Reims’ Yunis Abdelhamid: “PSG’s front three don’t defend.”

Stade de Reims centre-back Yunis Abdelhamid (35) said that it was easy for the team to work the ball out from the back against Paris-Saint Germain as the front three of Lionel Messi (35), Kylian Mbappé (24) and Neymar (30) “don’t defend.”

Reims rescued a late draw through Folarin Balogun (21), who scored with the last kick of the game as the game finished 1-1. Neymar had earlier given Les Parisiens the lead after a deflected ball fell perfectly at his feet to chip past the Reims goalkeeper. 

However, PSG, who haven’t hit full flow since the return of domestic football, struggled to create high-quality chances, whilst Reims looked dangerous throughout, especially in transitions. Abdelhamid attributed his side’s attacking success to the fact that PSG’s front line don’t contribute to the defensive efforts.

Speaking in the mixed zone after the match, Reims captain Abdelhamid said, “It was easy to work the ball out of the defence because the front three (Messi, Mbappé, Neymar) don’t defend. We knew on our side that if we passed this first line, they no longer participate in the collective defensive effort. We worked on that. We wanted to exploit it and that’s what we managed to do. That’s why we created so many chances.” 

The draw means that Reims manager Will Still remains unbeaten. The Belgian-English manager, who replaced Oscar Garcia, has managed 12 games, during which time they have registered six wins and six draws. 

GFFN | Luke Entwistle

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