PSG will, however, point to the treatment dished out to him by both the home players and fans in the superstar’s defence.

He was roundly kicked at every opportunity, fouled on countless occasions. The actions of the supporters were even worse.

Indeed, the enduring image of the match, in the capital, at least, will be the police gathering round €200 million signing Neymar, trying to protect him with riot shields as objects were hurled at him as he tried to take corners from either side of OM’s Stade Velodrome.

Missiles came raining down on Neymar as he tried to take this corner

Though not justification for the player’s actions – he should have understood that squaring up to an opponent having already been booked was at best risky – it is easy to understand why he would have been frustrated.

It was an incredible twist in a match that was a slow burner for much of the second half until Florian Thauvin fired the hosts into the lead with just 13 minutes left. The former Newcastle man was the benefactor of some passive defending but also some excellent persistence from Clinton Njie down the right after a corner.

That goal, which came after Luiz Gustavo and Neymar had exchanged efforts in the first half, seemed to have Marseille primed to move back into the title race, especially once Neymar was dismissed.

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Yet PSG found an answer. Cavani, who infamously fell out with Neymar earlier this season over the taking of a free-kick, profited from the absence of the Brazilian over such a situation to send a delicate effort over the wall, off the underside of the bar and into the goal two minutes into stoppage time.

What a strike from Cavani to level for PSG!

No doubt he will have a better claim over such set pieces when PSG’s main man returns and offered a timely reminder of the value he continues to have to the capital club.
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