French Ligue 1 champions PSG suffer a shock 1-0 defeat to the newly-promoted side Lens without Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Angel Di Maria, and four other first-team stars.
(African Stand) — Defending champions Paris Saint-Germain opened their league campaign without Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Angel Di Maria, and four other first-team stars and lost 1-0 at promoted Lens on Thursday.
PSG was missing a host of stars player who had tested positive for coronavirus.
Mbappe was not with them and his positive COVID-19 test happened on international duty with France last week.
In their absence, coach Thomas Tuchel handed debuts to 18-year-olds Kays Ruiz-Atil and Arnaud Kalimuendo in the attack, while the 20-year-old Bulka made just his second appearance.
He wasn’t helped when Verratti sprinted to demand the ball and the flustered goalie instead directed it straight to Ganago, who brushed off Verratti’s attempt at a tackle and smacked the ball into the top corner.
‘Yes it was a bit dangerous but that’s my way of playing. I always look for the ball because I play football. I asked for the ball,’ Verratti told broadcaster Canal Plus. ‘There are a lot of factors but we gave everything.’
Earlier, Ganago hit the post after a fine run and shot on the 17th. Ganago went close again before the break, while Ruiz-Atil looked lively.
Lens should have made it 2-0 midway through the second half, but forward Simon Banza fluffed a close-range header.
PSG had long spells on the ball but hardly threatened.
‘We struggled to create chances. we were missing players,’ Tuchel said.
His side now has a hectic schedule ahead with a home game against Marseille on Sunday followed by Metz at Parc des Princes on Wednesday.