Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting’s career at Paris Saint-Germain has been largely ineffective, to say the least. After leaving relegated Stoke City in 2018, few would have predicted that he would be the man to score the much-needed winner against surprise package, Atalanta, to send Les Parisiens into the UEFA Champions Leagues semi-finals.
The Cameroon international’s time in Paris was earmarked by his incredible miss against Strasbourg in 2019 in addition to his statistics at the Parc des Princes having been nothing to write home about either.
Understandably with Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Edinson Cavani and even Mauro Icardi among the striking options, the 31-year-old would be brought in as a back-up forward for Thomas Tuchel’s side, but with a poultry 9 goals and three assists in 49 appearances, few would have given the veteran a chance of being the hero in a crunch European tie.
After the 2-1 victory, the former FC Schalke 04 man felt confident that he could impact the flow of the match after replacing Icardi, who was invisible all night.
“It was a crazy game. A tough game against a tough opponent. It wasn’t easy. Neymar had a great game,” he told BT Sport.
“I thought when I was coming on, ‘We can’t lose, we can’t go home like this’. I was confident in myself and the team.
“We had a good feeling in the team. We are enjoying good moments on and off the pitch. We won four trophies but this one is the most important.
“We believe in ourselves. Everyone knows we have top-quality individuals but we wanted to show team (work). I’m very happy we did it today.
“It’s a long time and we (have) never won the Champions League. With such a great team you have to have this ambition. We will give everything in the next game and continue to believe.” Choupo-Mouting added.
The Ligue 1 champions have now reached the UEFA Champions League semi-final stage for the first time since the 1994/95 season and will face the winner of the encounter between Red Bull Leipzig and Atletico Madrid.