Just days after defeating Manchester United to win the International Champions Cup, Paris Saint-Germain were back to their winning ways with a convincing 2-0 victory over Olympique Lyonnais to hoist their third consecutive Trophée des Champions in Montreal on Saturday.
Goals from Serge Aurier and Edinson Cavani in the first half sealed the victory for Paris in what was a surprisingly comfortable game for the capital club. Lyon failed to get a shot on goal until the 89th minute and ultimately finished the match with ten men as Maxime Gonalons was sent off midway through the second half.
If not for the excellent Anthony Lopes in goal, Lyon could well have conceded five or more on the day. Paris put up a performance just as solid as Thursday’s over Manchester United, but with the added intensity of a competitive match. PSG turned on the flair and style all across the pitch: Zlatan made a few no-look passes and mid-air backheels, David Luiz fooled Alexandre Lacazette with his aerial control, and Lucas Moura and Marco Verratti made their trademark runs. It was a dominating and satisfying win against a side that Paris Saint-Germain failed to defeat last season.
Serge Aurier was the clear standout and was named Man of the Match. He netted the first with a brave header off a Luiz cross and seemed to be involved in every positive play for Paris. For a player so impressive out-of-position this preseason, he’s followed that up with a model wingback performance. His €12 million transfer from Toulouse might go down as one of the best bargains in club history.
Jean-Kévin Augustin and Jean-Christophe Bahebeck made late cameos, in part due to the lack of pressure in the match, and the substitutions may have hinted at manager Laurent Blanc’s future plans. The 18-year-old Augustin in particular has looked impressive this preseason and many speculate he’s earned a role in the squad as the third-string striker behind Ibrahimovic and Cavani. Though, as in the United match, Ibrahimovic preferred to play as part of the midfield with Lucas and Cavani making themselves available centrally. This is certainly a relieving change of system for the Uruguayan, who earned himself a goal through a fantastic rebounded finish.
And what would a Paris Saint-Germain match be without a little bit of drama? We had the Ibrahimovic/Rabiot war of words not long ago and now we have reports out of Italy that quote Ibrahimovic as saying that he’s played his last game for PSG. Worry not though. It’s complete bullshit.
Journalist in Canada for PSG-Lyon: Zlatan Ibrahimovic did not stop & speak to French press in mixed zone about exit. https://t.co/3j8ZFZ9oxE
— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) August 1, 2015