Mon, Aug 03, 2015 - Page 20 News List

PSG ease past Lyon to lift Trophee des Champions


Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian defender Thiago Silva, center, holds the trophy as he celebrates with his teammates after winning the Trophee des Champions against Olympique Lyonnais at the Saputo Stadium in Montreal, Quebec, on Saturday.

Photo: AFP

Paris Saint-Germain started the new season on Saturday just as they ended the old, lifting silverware in the shape of the Trophee des Champions thanks to a 2-0 win over Olympique Lyonnais in Montreal.

Two early goals by Serge Aurier and Edinson Cavani put PSG in control of the traditional season-opening contest and left Lyon with a mountain to climb long before their captain Maxime Gonalons was sent off in the 64th minute.

Having completed an unprecedented clean sweep of the domestic honors in France last season, the win underlined PSG’s status as the team to beat again in the coming campaign.

Tipped to be their main challengers once more, Lyon were invited to face the treble winners after finishing second to them in Ligue 1 last season as the Trophee was played outside France for the seventh year in a row, but weakened by a series of injuries to key players and by the absence of suspended starlet Nabil Fekir, Lyon never looked like winning a game played in front of an enthusiastic crowd at the Saputo Stadium in the largest city of Canada’s French-speaking Quebec Province.

A strong PSG side featuring summer signing Kevin Trapp of Germany in goal opened the scoring in the 11th minute as the Lyon defense failed to clear a free-kick into the penalty area and David Luiz drove the ball back into the six-yard box for his fellow defender Aurier to head home.

The second goal arrived just six minutes later when Anthony Lopes saved from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cavani, who started pre-season late after featuring for Uruguay at the Copa America, lashed home the loose ball.

With last season’s top scorer and player of the year Alexandre Lacazette unable to make an impression, Lyon offered little at the other end and Blaise Matuidi missed a great chance to increase PSG’s lead after Lopes saved from Ibrahimovic’s extravagant back-heeled effort.

Ibrahimovic, who has been in good form during his club’s pre-season tour of North America as he enters the last year of his PSG contract, fired wide in the second half when finding himself with just Lopes to beat.

Shortly after he was on the receiving end of a Gonalons challenge that saw the Lyon captain pick up a second yellow card and depart for an early bath.

“The mood in the camp is good. It is early days, but we have prepared well,” Matuidi told beIN Sports. “The season will be long. Now we have spent 18 days abroad and it is difficult, so we are looking forward to going home, seeing our families again and resting before the season starts.”

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