Stade Malherbe Caen 2-2 PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN
Paris Saint-Germain needed to rely on another late showing as Christophe Jallet netted an elusive equaliser in stoppage time to salvage a point away to Caen last night.
Having replaced Guillaume Hoarau in the second-half, the full-back volleyed home from Jeremy Menez’s cross to preserve Carlo Ancelotti’s unbeaten start to his tenure and maintain the club’s 12-game unbeaten run.
The result is all the more decisive as Montpellier were humbled by Nancy 1-0 meaning Les Parisiens extend the lead at the summit to two points.
Ancelotti tinkered with his formation, opting to field a 4-4-2 with Hoarau and Kevin Gameiro up top. Due to the absence of Nene through suspension, the 52-year-old shuffled the pack and reintroduced Thiago Motta back into the fold having missed the game at Dijon last week.
PSG started nervously and could have easily found themselves behind in the opening exchanges. Former player Pierre-Alain Frau eluded captain Mamadou Sakho in the penalty area with some clever movement but rattled the top of Salvatore Sirigu’s crossbar from close range. Minutes later, Sirigu was left all at sea as Livio Nabab latched onto a ball over the top, dinking the ball over the Italian but fluffed his lines by not finishing it with an open goal gaping.
After what was a tentative first-half for large parts, Caen upset the apple cart by taking the lead in the 54th minute. Frau finally got his goal after initially being denied by Sirigu from point blank range but followed up on the rebound in front of the small pocket of fans from the capital.
Javier Pastore immediately responded with an equaliser two minute later. The Argentine diligently weaved his way into the penalty area but got ever so lucky as an attempted clearance smashed of his anatomy and into the net, leaving goalkeeper Alexis Thebaux perplexed.
PSG’s frailties from set-pieces was telling again as Thomas Heurtaux got up above Alex to head home via a corner putting Ancelotti’s unbeaten run in jeopardy with just 20 minutes left to play.
However, the evident spirit in the camp of the visitors showed no signs of vanquishing as Jallet got on the end of a deflected Menez cross and lashed the ball into the roof of net, earning what could be a priceless point in the title race.
Monsieur Ancelotti’s echoes that view, believing the result is vital. As reported by the club’s Official Site, he said: “This is a good result because we have not lost the game, in which we had many difficulties. In the first period, Caen pressed us a lot in midfield and we were unable to develop our game. We then had a better second half and we ended up finding the resources to equalise. This is an important point earned in the standings. We must improve before the next match and return to our game”.