Mbappe sent off in Cup shock

PARIS • Kylian Mbappe was sent off for a shocking tackle as Paris Saint-Germain were stunned by Rennes in Saturday's French Cup final, losing 6-5 on penalties after a dramatic game finished 2-2 at the end of extra time.

PSG substitute Christopher Nkunku blazed his sudden-death spot kick over the bar in the shoot-out, sparking scenes of joy among the Rennes fans at the Stade de France as they won a first trophy in almost half a century.

"It has been talked about enough at the club in the last few weeks for us to realise that we have achieved something historic," said Rennes coach Julien Stephan.

It was a remarkable comeback from the Brittany side, who had seen Dani Alves and the returning Neymar give Ligue 1 champions PSG a 2-0 lead midway through the first half. PSG looked poised to wrap up a domestic double, but Presnel Kimpembe's own goal gave Rennes hope and Mexer headed them level in the 66th minute to force extra time.

Penalties were already looming when Mbappe, who endured a frustrating evening, was shown a straight red card in the 118th minute.

He caught Rennes defender Damien da Silva on the knee with his studs, and can expect a lengthy ban.

PSG coach Thomas Tuchel said: "He had a slight muscle injury yesterday, he stopped training early and went to hospital for tests. Maybe that was in his head. You got the feeling he was lacking confidence and didn't feel free. The red card at the end, it's not him."

PSG fell short of securing the double in Tuchel's first season in charge, which will also be remembered for the club's Champions League exit to Manchester United in the last 16.

"I am sad," said Neymar. "We weren't quite up to it, but there is no point crying about it now. There is nothing we can do."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 29, 2019, with the headline 'Mbappe sent off in Cup shock'. Print Edition | Subscribe