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Mbappe absence no excuse for PSG defeat – Pochettino

Kylian Mbappe - Paris Saint-Germain
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An unused substitute, the French forward could only watch on as his side’s European journey came to an end on Tuesday night.

Mauricio Pochettino has refused to use Kylian Mbappe’s absence as an excuse for Paris Saint-Germain’s defeat to Manchester City.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Pochettino displayed uncertainty over Mbappe’s availability for PSG’s Champions League semi-final second-leg at the Etihad.

The manager’s fear came true as his star man was unable to fully recover from his calf injury. And while he did travel along with the rest of the team to Manchester, the 22-year-old never took to the pitch.

It did not end well for PSG, who were already at a 2-1 disadvantage from the first leg, as they exited the Champions League after another 2-0 loss.

“That [Mbappe’s absence] cannot be an excuse,” Pochettino told RMC Sport after the full-time whistle.

“We are a team. Of course, it’s unlucky he was not ready to help the team, but that’s not an excuse. We cannot use that excuse because the performance from the team was good.”

“Sometimes in football you need a percentage of luck in some periods of the game. They scored from a situation where we were pressing high, with a long ball.

“The players will all feel disappointed. We did well. The plan, the game was good. This type of game you need luck to go your way.”