Thursday, February 22, 2018 | ePaper
Mbappe sent off as PSG reach League Cup final
Holders Paris Saint-Germain edged into the French League Cup final by beating Rennes 3-2 at Roazhon Park on Tuesday, despite seeing Kylian Mbappe sent off on his return from injury.
Thomas Meunier put the visitors ahead with a magnificent volley, before Rennes winger Wahbi Khazri had a goal ruled out for handball after a video assistant referee review.
Brazilian defender Marquinhos tapped in after half-time, before Giovani Lo Celso was gifted PSG's third goal by a dreadful mistake from home goalkeeper Abdoulaye Diallo.
Mbappe saw red after another VAR decision for a terrible foul on Ismaila Sarr, but consolations from Diafra Sakho on his Rennes debut and Sanjin Prcic couldn't prevent PSG from continuing their bid for a fifth consecutive League Cup.
"I think the team kept calm and patient in the first half, and then we made the difference," said PSG coach Unai Emery.
"But Kylian's red card gave them some opportunities to score and get closer to us... But I'm happy with the way the players responded."
PSG are still on track to complete an unprecedented quadruple of the Ligue 1, Champions League, French Cup and French League Cup titles, after extending their winning streak in domestic cup competitions to 37 matches.
The capital club will face either Monaco or Montpellier, who play at the Stade Louis II on Wednesday, in the final on March 31.
Emery made six changes to the team which thrashed Montpellier 4-0 in the league on Saturday, with Mbappe returning from a two-game injury absence and Edinson Cavani rested after breaking the club's all-time goalscoring record at the weekend.
Belgian right-back Meunier, no stranger to spectacular strikes, broke the deadlock in the 24th minute with a wonderful finish from the edge of the area.