Paris Saint-Germain failed to wrap up the inevitable and a second consecutive league title against Sochaux last Sunday. So the celebrations will have to be put on hold for a further week. Victory over Rennes next Wednesday in front of a rapturous Parc des Princes will make history and seal immortality for these players. Being the first crop to capture consecutive league titles – with a cup victory in between – is a massive step in the history of this club. But it could and should have been wrapped already.
The game in the Stade Auguste Bonal was an entertaining one. Relegation strugglers FCSM gave a great account of themselves where they had opportunities to win the game themselves. We on the other hand missed chances as well and lacked a killer instinct that was so evidently needed. Coach Laurent Blanc has come under some scrutiny again by not being decisive when FCSM equalised after Edinson Cavani had put us ahead with a sublime finish. Clearly the substitutions from Blanc were same old, same old and did not really have a driving impetus in getting all three points.
Saying that we did have chances, primarily through Cavani who had an eventful game. His goal in the first-half was arguably one of his best in a Parisien shirt. It was expertly taken on the volley via Thiago Motta’s searching ball. People will have their view on ‘El Matador’ but that was his 16th goal this season in Ligue 1, 25 overall. It is a superb tally for a debut campaign.
The skipper Thiago Silva, was the unfortunate one who got in the way of Salvatore Sirigu’s palm out via Florian Marange’s cross. The ball trickled in off the Brazilian which ultimately put the title party on hold for a further 10 days at that time (if all goes well against Rennes of course).
Lucas Moura said after the game that the players are mentally drained and thinking about their end of season holidays. Perhaps a little naïve for him to say that but you do sense he has a point. Particularly after the Chelsea games, it has taken a lot out of the players. Some are resting on their laurels a little as they sense the league is already wrapped up. But Laurent Blanc will love for it just to be put to bed. With Zlatan Ibrahimovic back for next week, that is a terrific end of season boost which will galvanise everyone.
In other news, there has been some bad publicity off the field this week with UEFA confirming the club have breached Financial Fair Play. Details are yet to be revealed but Les Parisiens will have to pay a sanction – also yet to be released. It seems a little ironic to me that a ‘fine’ has to be paid to the governing body who want to eradicate excessive spending. Nevertheless, the sanction could have been greater with reports of a possible expulsion from the Champions Laegue for teams who breach these rules, which Platini publically brushed aside. It seems the lucrative sponsorship deal with Qatar Tourism Authority is what UEFA have their concerns about.