De Bruyne’s message to Mahrez before he fired home free-kick for Man City

Riyad Mahrez bagged Manchester City’s winner in Paris as he curled home a free-kick after stepping up ahead of Kevin De Bruyne.

The Premier League side had an excellent opportunity to take the lead at the Parc des Princes when they won a set piece 20 yards out.

De Bruyne will have been favourite to step up such is his quality, but his team-mate sought permission to take it.

The Belgian told Mahrez that if he was confident in his ability he had no problem with him calling rank.

“He asked me if he could take it and I said ‘if you believe in yourself take it’,” De Bruyne, who grabbed City’s equaliser, told BT Sport.

“He scored the goal so who am I to say something about that?”

Riyad Mahrez fired home Man City’s winner

De Bruyne’s strike levelled proceedings after his cross evaded everyone including Keylor Navas.

“It’s set up in the perfect position. It’s difficult for the keeper because he always expects somebody to touch it,” said the City star.

Pep Guardiola’s side will now take a 2-1 advantage back to the Etihad ahead of next week’s second-leg.

PSG were 1-0 up at half-time after Marquinhos had opened the scoring with a header.

City came out a team reborn in the second-half though as De Bruyne praised their performance in the French capital.

Pep Guardiola's side will take a 2-1 lead back to the Etihad
Pep Guardiola’s side will take a 2-1 lead back to the Etihad

He said: “I think a game of two halves. We started well in the first 10 minutes, had some control. But you know they’re an unbelievable team. They’ve got great quality up front.

“I think it’s a shame the way we conceded. I think after that they had a couple of small chances. After 25 minutes we changed the way we pressed them and it became better.

“We had a couple of opportunities, especially the one with Phil (Foden). The second half was much better. We put them under pressure.

“Obviously the way the first goal goes in is a bit lucky but I think we played great football in the second half.”

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