Yohan Cabaye, signed from Newcastle United 48 hours earlier, came on as a second-half substitute and hit the bar with a header in Paris Saint-Germain’s 2-0 defeat of Girondins de Bordeaux on Friday.
PSG manager Laurent Blanc introduced Cabaye, who arrived from the Premier League in a reported 23 million euro (US$31 million) deal, to the Parc des Princes in the 68th minute.
The 28-year-old France international wasted no time in making his presence felt, in icy wet conditions, with an attempt flying off the crossbar of Bordeaux goalkeeper Cedric Carrasso.
The Paris Saint-Germain manager, reflecting on his new purchase, said: “We’d planned to introduce him for 20 or 30 minutes, it depended on how the match unfolded.”
“I wasn’t at all concerned for him. He’s bright, he knows how we want to play, he understands our philosophy,” he said. “He will adapt to our way of playing without too many problems.”
Ten minutes before Cabaye made his debut, PSG took the lead through star Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who picked up a cross from Brazilian Lucas to fire home from close range his 18th goal of the season.
Lucas was at the center of PSG’s second goal, too, sending in the corner for his compatriot Alex to knock in with two minutes left on the clock.
The win, the capital club’s 16th of the season, stretched their lead over AS Monaco, away to Lorient yesterday, to six points. Bordeaux remain in seventh, 20 points off the leaders.
PSG came away from the game with an injury concern over Edinson Cavani after the Uruguayan striker came off for the last quarter of an hour with a muscle problem.
“We’re going to have to be extra careful, we’ll see what our medical staff say tomorrow,” Blanc said.