MESSI’S TRIPLE ASSIST
Sergio Ramos finally made his Paris Saint-Germain debut – but saw his thunder stolen by an inspired Lionel Messi.
The former LaLiga sparring partners were both in action for the French giants in a 3-1 win at St Etienne.
It was former Real Madrid skipper Ramos’ long-awaited first competitive outing for the club after a muscle injury sidelined him for the start of the season.
The Spain defender, 35, joined the Ligue 1 side in the summer on a free from Real, and weeks later Argentina legend Messi arrived from Barcelona as a free agent.
Both started in a star-studded PSG line-up at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard stadium and Ramos made a solid start – but it was Messi who stole the show by setting up all of their three goals.
The hosts had taken a 23rd-minute lead in snowy conditions with a goal from Denis Bouanga but they were up against it when they had Timothee Kolodziejczak sent off on the stroke of half-time for a trip on Kylian Mbappe.
Messi took control after that with a free-kick from that Kolodziejczak foul which was headed in by Marquinhos to make it 1-1.
They took the lead 11 minutes from time when Messi found Angel Di Maria and he curled a shot into the far corner.
And they sealed the win in stoppage time when Messi crossed for Marquinhos to head in his second goal.
The victory extended PSG’s Ligue 1 lead to 14 points but it was marred by an injury to Neymar.
The Brazil superstar was carried off on a stretcher with an ankle injury after a tackle from Yvann Macon five minutes from time.