AC Milan 2-1 PSG: Player ratings as Leao & Loftus-Cheek inspire huge European win

  • Milan Skriniar headed PSG ahead early on before Rafael Leao’s acrobatic equaliser
  • Olivier Giroud’s header shortly after half-time proved to be the winner
  • PSG drop to second in Group F, Milan up to third

AC Milan secured their first win of the Champions League campaign with a 2-1 victory over Paris Saint-Germain that blows Group F wide open.

Ex-Inter man Milan Skriniar headed PSG ahead early on but Rafael Leao cancelled that out almost immediately, before Olivier Giroud’s thumping header in the second half fired Milan to a famous, entertaining victory.

After Borussia Dortmund’s triumph over Newcastle United earlier on Tuesday, all four teams are now separated by just three points heading into the final two matchdays.

How the game unfolded

Ruben Loftus-Cheek fizzed over the bar early on as Milan made a hot start to proceedings, but it was PSG who took the early lead as former Inter captain Skriniar found himself unmarked at the back post to nod home from a corner.

Milan missed the chance to respond immediately through Yunus Musah, who fired straight at Gianluigi Donnarumma with the goal gaping, but they wouldn’t trail for long. In the 12th minute, Donnarumma saved Giroud’s strike up into the air, where Leao was waiting with an acrobatic effort to finally find the back of the net for Milan.

Kylian Mbappe went racing through on goal and a goal seemed inevitable as he ran one-on-one with Mike Maignan, only to mis-hit his strike and scuff the ball well wide – an error which was met with stunned silence by the crowd.

Ousmane Dembele rattled the crossbar, before Olivier Giroud drilled into the side netting at the other end of the pitch as both sides upped the tempo in an all-go first 45.

Neither side would end up finding the back of the net again before the interval, but it was not for lack of trying. PSG managed 12 shots and Milan added ten, but the all-important scoreline remained level at the break.

The second half began at the same tempo, with Tijani Reijnders drilling wide inside the first few minutes, and Milan would fire themselves ahead by the 50th minute when Giroud crashed home a header from a perfect Theo Hernandez cross.

Now leading, Milan switched their focus somewhat, settling into a rigid shape and challenging PSG to break them down for the final 30 minutes.

On a rare foray forwards as the club ticked over to 85, substitute Noah Okafor bent a glorious effort towards Donnarumma but the Italian did well to get down and turn the ball beyond his post. The ensuing corner also led to some penalty-box chaos from which Okafor blazed over.

In the dying embers, Maignan tipped Lee Kang-in’s low drive on to his post, helping Milan to hold on to a huge victory.

AC Milan player ratings (4-2-3-1)

Manuel Ugarte, Ruben Loftus-Cheek

Loftus-Cheek was excellent / Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

GK: Mike Maignan – 7/10 – Hung out to dry for Skriniar’s opener but was otherwise impressive as he dealt with PSG’s avalanche of shots.

RB: Davide Calabria – 7/10 – Not many players enjoy their battles with Mbappe but Calabria can leave this one with his head held high. Put in a real shift against the Frenchman.

CB: Malick Thiaw – 6/10 – A busy outing. PSG’s forwards put him through his paces in an even fight, with Thiaw seeing decent results for his work rate.

CB: Fikayo Tomori – 7/10 – Lost his man for the opener but was otherwise solid. No idea why he’s on free-kicks now.

LB: Theo Hernandez – 7/10 – Enjoyed his battle with Dembele and made a big impact in attack with a glorious cross for Giroud.

DM: Tijani Reijnders – 8/10 – Did an excellent job of driving forward and keeping the tempo high for Milan, before switching his focus to teaming up with Calabria to keep Mbappe quiet. So selfless.

DM: Yunus Musah – 7/10 – He may have lacked a little composure on the ball but Musah’s energy and desire to press were both outstanding. Buzzed around the pitch to keep things ticking perfectly.

RM: Christian Pulisic – 6/10 – Lively but not always effective. Did most of his best work off the ball. Pulled his hamstring in stoppage time.

AM: Ruben Loftus-Cheek – 8/10 – Roared forward with every opportunity and his ball-carrying was simply too much for PSG to handle. Definitely guilty of switching off for the opening goal but did his best to make up for that early error.

LM: Rafael Leao – 8/10 – An acrobatic goal in a lively outing. Leao was happy to drive at his defender at every opportunity and usually got some success.

ST: Olivier Giroud – 7/10 – Physically not quick enough to keep up with the tempo of this game but still managed to make an impact with a thumping header early in the second half. Did so much work defending from corners as well.


SUB: Rade Krunic (84′ for Musah) – N/A

SUB: Noah Okafor (84′ for Leao) – N/A

SUB: Alessandro Florenzi (90′ for Pulisic) – N/A

Subs not used: Lapo Nava (GK), Antonio Mirante (GK), Davide Bartesaghi, Yacine Adli, Tommaso Pobega, Samuel Chukwueze, Luka Jovic


Stefano Pioli – 9/10 – As close to perfection as you could ask for. Pioli went all-action, particularly with his midfield, and that’s exactly where this match was won. A bold decision which paid off.

PSG player ratings (4-3-3)

Kylian Mbappe

A quiet outing for Mbappe / Marco Luzzani/GettyImages

GK: Gianluigi Donnarumma – 6/10 – In a hostile environment, Donnarumma kept his composure. Not helped by Marquinhos for the equaliser.

RB: Achraf Hakimi – 5/10 – Really dangerous in attack but offered nothing in defence up against Leao.

CB: Marquinhos – 6/10 – Rose highest for the flick-on for Skriniar’s opener before obstructing Donnarumma for the equaliser. A mixed evening.

CB: Milan Skriniar – 6/10 – Scored the easiest goal he could have asked for but could do nothing to stop Giroud’s emphatic header. Perhaps fortunate to avoid a handful of yellow cards as his composure began to fade.

LB: Lucas Hernandez – 5/10 – A bit too safe in possession in the end, but that’s largely because every long ball he played appeared to miss its target.

DM: Manuel Ugarte – 5/10 – Visibly exhausted as Milan’s high-tempo midfield breezed past him at every opportunity.

CM: Warren Zaire-Emery – 7/10 – Did what he could to try and restore some midfield control as Milan tried to overpower PSG.

CM: Vitinha – 6/10 – Great energy and vision as he kept PSG pushing forward in the first 45. A quiet start to the second half which saw him substituted.

RW: Ousmane Dembele – 6/10 – Seemed to be involved in everything good for PSG without actually doing a whole lot. His movement naturally helped those around him, even if his end product did not.

ST: Randal Kolo Muani – 5/10 – Offered very little for his side and Milan’s centre-backs didn’t even have to work particularly hard to stop him. Enrique needs to figure this problem out.

LW: Kylian Mbappe – 6/10 – Drifted in and out of the game. Had some big moments but not enough of them.


SUB: Goncalo Ramos (60′ for Kolo Muani) – 5/10

SUB: Lee Kang-in (60′ for Vitinha) – 6/10

SUB: Fabian Ruiz (60′ for Ugarte) – 5/10

SUB: Nordi Mukiele (64′ for Lucas) – 5/10

SUB: Bradley Barcola (90′ for Skriniar) – N/A

Subs not used: Arnau Tenas (GK), Alexandre Letellier (GK), Carlos Soler


Luis Enrique – 5/10 – This attack just doesn’t feel right. Kolo Muani’s inclusion has been a little awkward and it’s clear Enrique is yet to figure out how to work with the striker and fellow new face Dembele.

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