PSG complete domestic treble with League Cup triumph

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Pablo Sarabia scored the winning penalty in a shoot-out as Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) sharped up for their assault on the Champions League in Lisbon next week.

It was only the second domestic game in France since Ligue 1 was curtailed in April – with PSG beating Saint-Etienne 1-0 last Friday in the French Cup final. 

After the first 10 penalties were scored, PSG keeper Keylor Navas saved from Bertrand Traore before Pablo Sarabia scored the winning kick.

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Colourless game for the assemblage

COVID-19 concerns did not prevent a crowd from attending this match, but only 5,000 fans were allowed inside the 80,000-capacity venue. 

The game had very little for the fans to entertain, except Lyon defender Rafael being sent off in the final minute of extra time for fouling Angel di Maria on the edge of the box. 

PSG created almost all the notable chances, despite Mauro Icardi looking sluggish up front. 

Neymar looked sharper, fresh from scoring the winner in the French Cup final.

PSG are desperate for tangible success in Europe but on this evidence they still have some areas for improvement and boxes to tick before being ready for the big Champions League test. 

“We suffered but it’s beautiful to win at the end. We will celebrate this and then tomorrow we will start to think about another big match,” Marco Verratti told France 2 television.

Last roar for the competition

This is the Qatar-owned club’s fourth treble in the last six years, but the League Cup, an unloved competition for the French football fans, will be discontinued next season.

It was the last roar for the competition, which was founded in 1995, as the French Professional Football League (LFP) decided in September to scrap it as of next season until further notice.

The LFP had failed to secure a broadcaster for the 2020-2024 period but reserved the right to relaunch the competition in the future.

European football hopes looking over for Lyon

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Lyon are now facing a first season without European football since 1996-97, unless they win this season’s Champions League.

They visit Juventus next Friday in the last-16 second leg, holding a 1-0 first-leg win but they will surely need to do better than the performance they showed the other night.

PSG, who have won 25 of France’s last 36 domestic trophies, play Atalanta in the quarter-finals on Wednesday, 12 August as they look for a quadruple. 

PSG, Marseille and Rennes will be France’s representatives in the 2020/21 Champions League, with Reims now joining Lille and Nice in the Europa League.

The 2020-21 Ligue 1 season begins on 23 August, the same day as the Champions League final.

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