For the visit of Lille on Friday evening, Mauricio Pochettino chose a 4-3-3 formation, with Lionel Messi starting as a false nine flanked by Neymar and Angel Di Maria — Kylian Mbappe was in the stands with his father due to illness.
Messi, however, was replaced by Mauro Icardi at halftime, despite no visible injury.
PSG was down 1-0 at the time of the substitution, thanks to a first-half strike from Jonathan David, but their shape improved in the second half, and they began to create chances.
Di Maria set up Marquinhos for the equalizer in the 74th minute, before Neymar supplied the Argentine with a gem of a ball for the game-winning goal in the 88th minute, a well-taken, arrowed attempt.
With Icardi as the main point, PSG made more sense. Neymar, who had a poor first half, improved dramatically and began to dictate, while Di Maria was the catalyst for the comeback.
Despite his impressive finish to the game, Neymar has been chastised in both France and Brazil this season for his lack of effort off the field. During his summer vacation, he gained weight and has performed poorly thus far this season.
The 30-year-old, on the other hand, has stated unequivocally that he will not change. People should treat him with greater respect and stop criticizing his off-field actions, he says.
“I speak of respect because people say: ‘Ah, Neymar doesn’t take care of himself, Neymar is this, Neymar is that,’” the Brazilian said during a YouTube interview as carried by CaughtOffside.
“How can one be 12 years at the top without taking care of himself? Nobody gets that. I know how to take care of myself, I have a physical therapist and a personal trainer practically 24 hours with me, for what? Nothing at all?
“I go out when I can. I go out when possible, when I know that I won’t train the next day. I’m not going to stop doing anything. What’s the problem? You can judge me for what I do on the field, then I allow you to speak. Not what I do off it.”