Ben Arfa nets as PSG thrash OL
By D. Crossan
Paris Saint-Germain were in ominously good form as they crushed Olympique Lyonnais 4-1 in Klagenfurt, Austria to claim a fourth consecutive Trophée des Champions.
Saturday, August 6, 2016
Trophée des Champions
Wörthersee Stadion, Klagenfurt
It may be a new era for the capital club, with Unai Emery having succeeded Laurent Blanc as coach, but they remain in no mood to share out the trophies. Having beaten OL 2-0 in Canada in the equivalent fixture last year, PSG plundered goals, looking sharp in their new 4-2-3-1 formation under their Spanish coach.
PSG did the domestic quadruple for the second consecutive season in 2015-2016 and Lyon were their closest challengers in Ligue 1, finishing second, albeit some 31 points adrift.
Nabil Fekir had a goal disallowed for offside inside the first five minutes. Kevin Trapp, preferred to Alphonse Areola in the PSG goal had spilled a Jérémy Morel effort, only for OL to be denied by the flag.
Javier Pastore has inherited the number 10 shirt at Paris Saint-Germain from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the Argentinian playmaker required under ten minutes of his competitive debut sporting it to give PSG the lead. Layvin Kurzawa delivered from the left. Di Maria couldn't reach it with his head, but the impressive Pastore was on hand to side-foot home.
Angel Di Maria attempted an audacious lob and then in the 14th minute Alexandre Lacazette struck a post for OL with a volley from a Maxwel Cornet cross. While Bruno Genesio's side nearly equalised then, they fell 2-0 behind in the 18th minute. Pastore turned provider on this occasion, squaring for Lucas to finish.
Ben Arfa glory
PSG had scored with their only two real chances and nearly added a third soon afterwards when Di Maria struck a post with a chipped effort. Emery's side managed their third in the 33rd minute. Di Maria powered into the Lyon box on the left and rolled the ball across for Hatem Ben Arfa, born in the Paris region, to score his first goal for his new club on his competitive debut. The mercurial French international featured at centre-forward, with Edinson Cavani ruled out with a minor muscular problem.
Kurzawa, the attack-minded PSG left-back, netted a fourth seven minutes into the second half. Unmarked, he sped on to a quickly taken free-kick and beat Anthony Lopes, enduring a difficult night, with a diagonal finish.
Corentin Tolisso, who rejected a summer move to Napoli, scored a fine consolation goal in the 86th minute, heading home a volleyed Christophe Jallet cross. It barely made a dent in OL's pain.
PSG begin their Ligue 1 title defence at Bastia on Friday night, while OL kick off at Nancy on Sunday afternoon.