PLAYER RATINGS | PSG 1-0 Rennes: Kylian Mbappé sends hosts into Coupe de France final

Rennes had been the only team to interrupt PSG’s dominance in the Coupe de France between 2015 and 2021, and were once again standing in Les Parisiens‘ way as the latter looked to make the final for the first time since that run. The Rouge et Noir, whose league form had once again taken a downturn after a brief resurgence at the turn of the year, were looking to salvage their campaign by joining Lyon at the Stade de France in May.

For most of the first half, Steve Mandanda kept Mbappé at bay. The vwaeteran goalkeeper first pushed one of the forward’s efforts onto the crossbar –  from a one-on-one set up by Ousmane Dembélé – before parrying the penalty the France captain had won himself. Mbappé would eventualy find a way through minutes later, after latching onto another ball over the top on the counter – this time from Fabián Ruiz. After cutting inside from the left, he would see his shot generously deflected by Omari before nestling into bottom corner, leaving Mandanda helpless.

Julien Stéphan’s men would show more urgency past the hour mark, with Bourigeaud’s crosses causing panic several times in the PSG box, and Arnaud Kalimuendo nodding a close-range chance just over the bar. The striker would have a handful more chances to equalise against his former club, but the hosts would remain relatively untroubled. At the other end, some more Mandanda heroics – once again from Mbappé, and later on from an Asensio effort – kept the Bretons in the running for a spot in the final.

Ultimately, though, Rennes’ stale possession in stoppage time encapsulated an unthreatening evening at the Parc des Princes, days after defeat in Strasbourg. In the midst of a season-defining month, Luis Enrique’s men turned in an assured albeit uninspiring showing which will have ostensibly taken little physical toll, and kept them in the running for a treble. Sunday’s reception of Clermont will be the chance to fine-tune what has been an ailing attack of late, before Barcelona arrive in the French capital a few days later. 

PSG player ratings

Gianluigi Donnarumma, 5

Achraf Hakimi, 5

Marquinhos, 6 – On his first appearance since a two-month injury layoff, the club captain turned in an assured performance. Replaced by Danilo Pereira with 15 minutes to go.

Lucas Hernández, 5

Nuno Mendes, 5

Warren Zaïre-Emery, 5

Fabián Ruiz, 6

Vitinha, 6

Kang-in Lee, 4 – Involved in several attacks but showed little risk-taking, and was often stepping on Dembélé and Hakimi’s toes out on the right wing.

Ousmane Dembélé, 5 – Continues to frustrate through his distinct lack of accurate end product, despite being the most entertaining player on the pitch. The winger, in a new role that sees him roam around the right-hand side of the pitch, consistently slaloms past defenders and breaks opposition lines, but is rarely able to keep a shot on target nor find a teammate in the box.

Kylian Mbappé, 6 – All eyes were on the departing forward after his poor showing against Marseille and his substitution on the hour mark. This time, he did step up – it was his goal that ultimately sent PSG to the final bouncing back minutes after seeing his penalty saved. Much more involved in the team’s overall play than in recent weeks.

Rennes player ratings 

Steve Mandanda, 9 – Three impressive stops from Mbappé – including one from the spot – and could do nothing about the deflected strike that did tumble past him. Kept the Bretons in the game until the very end.

Guéla Doué, 5

Warmed Omari, 5

Arthur Theate, 5

Adrien Truffert, 4

Baptiste Santamaria, 5

Désiré Doué, 6 – In an unfamiliar deeper central midfield position, the teenager held his own and made some crucial interceptions, although the new role did blunt his capacity to contribute meaningfully to the team’s attacks.

Benjamin Bourigeaud, 6

Ludovic Blas, 5

Amine Gouiri, 5

Arnaud Kalimuendo, 4

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