Mauricio Pochettino believes Paris Saint-Germain did not get the luck they needed against Manchester City, losing a Champions League semi-final he felt they dominated. (More Football News)
Last year's runners-up PSG missed out on the chance to return to the tournament showpiece in Istanbul as a 2-0 defeat at the Etihad Stadium condemned them to a 4-1 aggregate defeat on Tuesday.
After throwing away 1-0 lead in the first leg, PSG had the lion's share of possession in Manchester but struggled to break down an excellent City defence without the services of the injured Kylian Mbappe.
PSG had 56 per cent possession and 14 shots to City's 12. However, nine were blocked and none hit the target, a goal in each half from Riyad Mahrez securing City's place in the final for the first time.
Angel Di Maria was sent off for an off-the-ball clash with Fernandinho six minutes after Mahrez's second, the Argentina international seeing red as Idrissa Gueye did in the first leg.
That ended any hope of a PSG comeback, leaving head coach Pochettino to rue a lack of fortune.
"I think we all feel disappointed. We did well, the game was good and we played well at the start," Pochettino told a media conference.
"I think the result is the most disappointing thing because at this level you need a bit of luck to go for you. It wasn't for us in Paris but the team gave everything and I feel proud for that.
"To play 15 mins with 10 men [in the first leg] and in the second leg to play 20 mins with 10 is a massive advantage [for City] but we did not concede goals with 10 versus a very good team like City.
12 - Mauricio Pochettino has lost more games against Pep Guardiola than he has vs any other manager in his career (12). Pep Guardiola’s total of 12 wins vs Pochettino is his joint-most against a manager in his career as a top-flight boss (level with Pellegrini & Dyche). Thorn. pic.twitter.com/9GRDfjpJsm— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) May 4, 2021
"We are disappointed for our fans, we gave everything but could not get what we wanted to get.
"We knew we gave the game to City in the first leg but that is football, it is about mistakes and at this level it is difficult to recover but the team was always fighting and never gave up.
"That is why I am proud of the players. City are a really good team and we didn't have that luck you need. That is all we can say because we dominated and it is difficult for a team to do that. But we didn't have the luck you need in football."
Asked about the red cards, he added: "We were in the game at 1-0 down but in football you need to believe because if you can score one, you can score another two. The red card changed that feeling, we were then open."
Marco Verratti and Ander Herrera each accused referee Bjorn Kuipers of insulting PSG players during the game, though Pochettino gave little importance to any controversy surrounding the match official.
"They explained... We need to believe what they are telling us but the most important thing is we are not in the final," he said.
"I didn't hear from the touchline but if something is there, maybe UEFA will investigate the situation. It is not an excuse to use and the most important thing is that we are not in the final."
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