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Messi, Neymar and Mbappe start for first time but PSG held by Brugge


Messi arrived from Barcelona this summer and was making his first start for the French giants but they were held to a 1-1 draw by the Belgian side.

The Argentine forward hit the woodwork but was otherwise far from his brilliant best alongside the hugely disappointing Neymar and Mbappe, who set up Ander Herrera for PSG’s first-half opener before being replaced injured after the break.

Brugge, who levelled before half-time through Hans Vanaken, were more aggressive and had the best chances against a PSG side lacking quality and defensive focus.

The result left PSG and Brugge trailing Group A leaders Manchester City by two points after the Premier League champions crushed RB Leipzig 6-3.

With Messi, Neymar and Mbappe together on the pitch for the first time, PSG made a confident start but Brugge responded well.

Mbappe broke down the left flank and his low cross was met by Herrera, who opened the scoring in the 15th minute with a low finish for his fourth goal of the season – his third in his last two games.

Messi set up Mbappe, who went close in the 23rd minute with an angled shot that was deflected by Simon Mignolet but PSG were lulled into a false sense of security.

On a sharp attack, the visitors’ defence was overwhelmed on the right side and after a late run into the box, Vanaken connected with Eduard Sobol’s cutback to beat Keylor Navas after 27 minutes.

Messi hit the woodwork with a fine curling shot from the edge of the box before Brugge threatened again as Vanaken forced Navas into a diving save with a low free kick.


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