Stand Up For The ‘Winter Champions’

PSG end the year as 'winter champions'

Paris Saint-Germain coasted to a 3-0 win away to Brest last night without ever really breaking a sweat. The victory means that no matter what Lyon and Marseille do, we will finish the year as ‘winter champions’.

Just as we did this time last year in Saint-Etienne under the stewardship of Antoine Kombouare – which turned out to be his final game – we have set ourselves up perfectly for when the season recommences in the new year. Last night’s win typified what a fantastic month this has been, considering it all started with a defeat to Nice.

Four successive clean-sheets and 12 goals scored has statistically put us as having the best attack and defence in the league. A lot of credit has to go to Thiago Silva and Mamadou Sakho at the back who have been tremendous as a pair. I have said many times before that Ancelotti’s decision to give Silva the captain’s armband is a stroke of genius. It has made him an even better player and is no doubt proving himself to be the best central defender in the world. Sakho is also being rubbed off by his influence and looking a far more composed player to the one last season that cost him his place in the team. They are both similar in terms of their ethos at playing the ball out from the back and it is working a treat.

But, the attack is the one that earns us victories and it was typified again against Brest on Friday night. Zlatan Ibrahimovic has never been renowned for being a poacher but in his last few outings he is certainly proving to be that. Accustomed to scoring outrageous goals, he is getting in the penalty area far more often than not – and we all know how he loves to drop deep. His opener last night was a lovely finesse finish after Chrsitophe Jallet curled the ball in from the right towards the front post.

Our second goal came from substitute Kevin Gameiro. Thiago Motta’s initial shot was well saved by Alexis Thebaux but he was unable to deny the Frenchman’s follow-up. Finally, a Bernard Mendy own goal rounded off the evening as Jallet’s cross was deflected off the SB29 man into his own net.

We absolutely dominated the 90 minutes. Yes, Brest we reduced to 10-men in the first-half but even before that our dominance was telling. 26 attempts on goal and 60% possession tell the tale.

Ancelotti was overjoyed with the victory and the form the team has shown towards the end of the year. He said after the game; “It’s very satisfying. We’ve finished the year well. It wasn’t an easy match, due to the playing surface, which wasn’t very good. On the other hand, our performance was very good. We played with confidence and the right attitude. It’s a great end to the year.”

Now the players and staff can enjoy their Christmas break just before they fly out to Qatar at the end of next week for the winter training camp.

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