Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani was one of the three players to be sent off last night in Paris Saint-Germain’s 3-1 win over over Lens.
Laurent Blanc’s injury-hit side beat their struggling opposition in an ill-tempered clash at the State De France on Friday.
Two Lens players and one from PSG were sent off in a crazy five minute spell of the second half as the Parisians provisionally moved up to second in the table with 18 points from 10 games, four behind early pace setters Marseille who have a game in hand.
Lens, who were hosting the match at State De France because their Bollaert stadium is closed for renovation ahead of Euro 2016, took a surprise lead in the 10th minute when Mali international Adama Coulibaly finished expertly from the edge of the box. It was a perfect start for Antoine Kombouare’s side- the present Lens coach who was controversially fired as the PSG manager three years ago.
PSG, once again without their star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic,out with a heel injury, and the Brazilian trio of Thiago Silva, Marquinhos and David Luiz, got back on level terms in the 28th minute when French midfielder Yohan Cabaye equalized with his first goal for PSG. And Maxwell put PSG in front soon with a perfectly executed right-footed lob after a mistake from Lens goalkeeper.
Things got worse for the promoted side when 19-year-old rookie Jean-Philippe Gbamin was sent off for his second bookable offence after a push on Edinson Cavani in the box. Cavani converted the resulting penalty to PSG 3-1 up but was sent off for a provocative celebration. The referee was not finished there and he capped off an incredible five-minute period by sending off Jerome Le Moigne. Lens finished the match with 9 men and the result leaves them in 18th place with eight points from ten games.
PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi criticized the controversial red card given to Edinson Cavani after the match.”It is the media’s job to speak about the referee,” he said to Canal +.
“Cavani does not deserve that red card. And why has he got a yellow before? He always does the same celebration.This is not normal and it is not good for French football if we want to develop. It is a bad situation for everyone.”
PSG coach Laurent Blanc refused to answer questions regarding the referee and expressed his dissatisfaction regarding his team’s performance last night.”There were some incidents which meant that, unfortunately, the match lost a lot of interest in the second half,” PSG coach Laurent Blanc said. “At 10 against nine, the teams canceled each other out and it wasn’t a great match.I will not answer questions on the refereeing. The game lost its appeal because of what happened.”
“It is a difficult game to analyse. The second half, even with mitigating circumstances, did not satisfy me.I regret the lack of ambition that my team showed after the third goal, but the pitch was difficult and there were also physical problems as well.”
“Subconsciously we wanted to preserve [the lead] but it does not please me. I’m happy with the win, that’s the most important thing.”
Dynamic midfielder Blaise Matuidi joined PSG’s injury list after limping off with a thigh injury in the 20th minute. “It’s been a difficult start to the season for us in terms of injuries,” Blanc said. “Our medical staff has a lot to do at the moment.”