Paris Saint-Germain 'heart' carried team to victory against Metz - Emery
Paris Saint-Germain manager Unai Emery was delighted by the character his players showed as they found a late winner to beat FC Metz 3-2 away in Ligue 1 on Tuesday evening.
Edinson Cavani and Blaise Matuidi had given the French champions a 2-0 half-time lead but Yann Jouffre and Cheick Diabate goals levelled things up and made it a nervy last few minutes at Stade Saint-Symphorien.
Matuidi headed in a stoppage-time winner, which has moved Emery's men level with Monaco at the top of Le Championnat on 77 points. Speaking after the final whistle, the Spaniard admitted his team cannot keep offering opponents ways back into matches.
"We controlled 80 percent of the game," said Emery. "In the end, the result is good for us. Our aim was to use the confidence that we have to hold on to the result and create more of a difference.
"But our opponents play too and can score at any moment. The Metz fans pushed after the first goal, which led to the second.
"At that moment, we needed to play with heart in the final minutes to get the three points. The team played the last four minutes with the attitude that we wanted to win. What we have to retain is that we must not let our opponents back into the match."
Two-goal hero Matuidi was pleased to have found the back of the net, but echoed his boss's sentiments that the team need to stop making life hard for themselves.
"Today we are very happy with the win, because we took the points and we continued going forward," the France international said. "It is true we could have had a very different result.
"In the first half, we deserved better. In the second, we did not do what we should have done and were punished.
"I am happy to have scored, it keeps us moving on. We do not give up on anything, that is the most important thing. But we must not give ourselves a fright like that."
Speaking with BeIn Sports 1, right-back Thomas Meunier admitted PSG's second half was sloppy and called Matuidi's winner "fortunate."
"The first half was very good with good work at the back and up front," said the Belgium international. "We applied ourselves, but in the second half, we let things slip a bit. We lost possession a lot, we made a lot of fouls we could have avoided and made life difficult for ourselves.
"To cap it all, we missed two or three good chances. We had a good deal of fortune and a nice goal from Blaise to get the win, but it was difficult. We need to have more confidence in ourselves, that we play as we are used to doing and how we did in the past."
PSG can now, temporarily at least, go top of Ligue 1 if they beat Montpellier HSC at home on Saturday evening before Monaco travel to Lyon on Sunday.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.