Keylor Navas is hailed by the French and Catalan press as the hero of the qualification of PSG for the quarter-finals of the Champions League.
In numbers since Wednesday, the praises of Keylor Navas continue on the front page of the sports press, this Thursday morning. The goalkeeper of PSG, great architect of the qualification of his team for the quarter-finals of the Champions League, appears on the front page of L’Equipe: “The Messiah is Navas”. The relief is in the columns of the Parisian: “a good thing done”, launches the daily newspaper of the capital. The qualification of PSG at the expense of Barça partly balances the memory of the traumatic remount of 2017.
The task was much more difficult this time for the Blaugrana, swept 4-1 in the first leg at home. But Ronald Koeman’s men have given themselves the means to believe it. Failing to do so, they obtained some recognition from the Catalan press.
“With honor”, the two sports newspapers in the region chose the same title of Une. The task was almost insurmountable. But Lionel Messi’s teammates have given themselves the means to believe in starting the match very strongly, with very high pressing, possession of the ball clearly to their advantage and opportunities in spades. But they stumbled upon the essential Keyor Navas.
The Costa Rican discouraged the Catalans and Lionel Messi by pushing back the latter’s penalty just before half-time. The turning point of the match since he saved his team from being led and doubting. It is also the penalty of the six-fold Ballon d’Or which illustrates the front page of Catalan dailies. Despite this elimination from the round of 16, a first since 2007 for Barça, the Blaugrana gave grounds for hope for a good end of the season with the ambition of winning the Cup-Championship double.
The Madrid press welcomes the performance of the former Real goalkeeper in a more reserved manner. Marca dedicates his first page to the victory of Atlético de Madrid in the late La Liga match which allows him to regain his ease at the top of the championship. But he quickly mentions the Catalan rival’s exit from the track: “Navas stops Barcelona”. As retains the disappointment of Messi in the arms of his friend and compatriot, Angel Di Maria, behind this title in the direction of Barça: “with pride, that is not enough”.