PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN 3-0 Stade Rennais
PSG brushed aside Stade Rennais 3-0 last night but with it their title dream went up in smoke as a late goal in Montpellier soured Les Parisiens’ night.
All went according to plan at the Parc des Princes as Nene inspired the team to victory with a hat-trick to cut the gap at the top to just one point – or so it seemed. With Montpellier and Lille looking set to conclude to a 0-0 draw, the home team snatched a last gasp winner in the 94th minute as Olivier Giroud broke behind LOSC’s defence and squared the ball across the face of goal for Karim Ait Fana to score. As the players back in the capital witnessed the action unfold in the tunne lof the Parc, the Stade de la Mosson erupted into a sea of euphoria as MHSC are now on the cusp of clinching their first ever Ligue 1 title.
This now means that just a point for Montpellier away to relegated Auxerre next weekend will crown them champions.PSG will need to beat Lorient and hope for a miracle on behalf of AJA. Although the disappointment of missing out on a championship seems inevitable, the good news is that Champions League qualification is secured with a second-placed finish and going straight into the group stage next season. This is a huge step in the development of this club and will ensure marquee names can be attracted to the capital in the summer.
Back to the match itself, the first-half entailed of very little. Much of the play was laboured in midfield and a physical duel was evident between both sets of players with chances were few and far between.
The breakthrough came shortly after the interval after a blistering counter-attack conducted by Jeremy Menez down the left resulted in him getting to the by-line and pulling the ball back for Nene to finish. The Brazilian then bagged his brace ten minutes later with a diligent freekick that was made in Brazil. Maxwell rolled the ball to Alex who stabled it for the number 10 to curl home beautifully with his left-foot. Rennes’ Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik brought down Menez in the box in the 65th minute resulting in a penalty that was subsequently converted by Nene to complete his hat-trick.
PSG were coasting and did not really have to move into second gear as Menez was unlucky not to score as he hit the foot of the post after getting in behind the Red and Blacks defence.
The game petered out and concluded a comfortable evening for Carlo Ancelotti’s side. It is however bittersweet with the events that transpired in the south of France. Carlo will not give up hope but realises it will be difficult to envisage Montpellier throwing their lead at the top away. He is however delighted that the club will be dining with Europe’s elite next season in the UEFA Champions League which is huge for the future of the club. He told the club’s Official Site; “Of course it’s going to be very difficult to win the title from here, but it’s not over yet. We have to win away to Lorient, which won’t be easy. We have reached our objective, to qualify for the Champions League, which was essential for the club. Tonight we really were superb, with a real cutting edge up front. It’s not easy joining a club in midseason, but I’m very happy here, I’ve chosen a very good club with a truly wonderful atmosphere. We’re playing for the title. We still have the slightest chance and we’ll give it everything. If Montpellier finish champions, then well done to them.”
It is onwards and upwards for the club. Rome was not built in a day and a Ligue 1 title will make its way to the Parc in the not too distant future. Exciting times lie ahead with Champions League football back at the Parc.
What will be will be next weekend…Allez PSG!