Paris Saint-Germain 0-0 Nice: Runaway Ligue 1 leaders thwarted at Parc des Princes

Paris Saint-Germain saw their 10-match winning home run in Ligue 1 halted as they were held to a goalless draw by Nice at Parc des Princes.

The runaway leaders in the French top flight had found the net three times in each of their past three league games, but drew a blank on Wednesday.

Angel Di Maria and Kylian Mbappe went closest to scoring for Mauricio Pochettino’s side, who proved wasteful in front of goal.

Despite 20 shots on goal, the hosts were unable to break down Nice, who held out for their first clean sheet in this fixture in 18 attempts.

Nice were seeking only a second win over PSG in 17 matches and Kasper Dolberg tested Gianluigi Donnarumma from long distance early on, while Presnel Kimpembe produced a wonderful last-ditch intervention to deny Andy Delort.

It then took brilliant reflexes by Donnarumma to keep out Delort’s header from point-blank range just after the half-hour mark.

At the other end, Lionel Messi shot straight at Walter Benitez, while Achraf Hakimi blazed a good opportunity wide when the ball broke kindly for him just before half-time.

Di Maria was played in behind the defence six minutes after the break, but Benitez was out quickly to block him.

Dolberg then saw a glorious opportunity go begging in the 59th minute, as he somehow headed onto the post from two yards out with the goal gaping.

A clever ball by Messi released Mbappe at the other end, but the France international could only shoot wide with just the goalkeeper to beat.

PSG pressed for a dramatic winner as the clock ticked down, but were forced to settle for a share of the spoils.

What does it mean?

Though they failed to break down Nice, PSG are a healthy 12 points clear at the top of Ligue 1 after their opening 16 matches

Following Marseille’s 1-0 win at Nantes, the visitors slip to fourth, but will take immense pride in becoming the first team to stop their opponents at Parc des Princes this season.

Delight for Dante

Now in his 39th year, the veteran defender led by example to keep PSG at bay.

Indeed, the former Brazil international recorded game-high tallies of nine clearances and three blocks, while he gained possession seven times with only central defensive partner Jean-Clair Todibo doing so on more occasions for the visitors.

Messi draws a blank

Fresh from winning his seventh Ballon d’Or, Messi arrived in this contest having found the net three times in as many home games for PSG.

But despite game-high tallies of six shots and five key passes, he could only register one effort on target while a further four were blocked by the stubborn Nice defence.

Key Opta Facts

– Nice kept a clean sheet against Paris Saint-Germain in Ligue 1 for the first time since February 2012.

– This is only the third Ligue 1 game this season that PSG have failed to win (W13), following their 2-0 loss at Rennes in October and their 0-0 draw at Marseille in October.

– Nice have won only one of their last four Ligue 1 games (D1 L2), after winning four of their previous six (D1 L1).

– This was PSG’s first 0-0 home draw in Ligue 1 since February 2017, versus Toulouse.

What’s next?

PSG look to return to winning ways when they travel to Lens on Saturday while, the following day, Nice aim to build on their momentum at home to Strasbourg.


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