Due to the pandemic the stadium was almost empty, as the 80,000 plus capacity stadium had just less than 5,000 fans in attendance as precautionary measures where put in place to avoid a crowd and social distancing rule.
French president Emmanuel Macron was on hand to kickoff formalities but kept his distance on the pitch. As the buildup to the first game in France since the league was cut short in April due to the outbreak was less than festive.
PSG quickly took charge of the game with Neymar got fouled by St Etienne’s Yvann Macon and went straight into the Ref’s book for the tackle in the opening minutes while St Etienne’s Denis Bouanga hit the post on the 5th minute to register their intent on the game.
But PSG draws the first blood after Kylian Mbappe sliced through the St Ettienne’s defence and fired a fierce low strike on goal but was stopped by the goalkeeper. Still, his save falls kindly for Neymar, who scored from six yard to give the Parisian the lead on the 14th minute.
St Etienne made an instant response by forcing a fine save from Keylor Navas from a resulting freekick.
The highlight was not a good one as Mbappe suffered an injury in the 26th minute of the game when St Etienne captain Loic Perrin left a nasty tackle on him and earned the captain at first a yellow card but was upgraded to a red card after concultation from VAR as St Ettiene was reduced to 10 men this prompted a scuffle between players from both.
Mbappe left the pitch in a lot of pain and tears could be seen on his face, fans were on their feet as they feared the worse could have happened their star player limped off the pitch
The Ref had to give a total of 4 yellow cards before the game went into half-time as he struggled to control the game
The Ref continued from where he stopped as it took only six-minute to issue his first yellow card of the second half to a St Ettiene player.
PSG continued to control the game as Di Maria, Neymar, and Icardi all got close to scoring but were unable to convert their chances.
Still, the team had done enough to hold on to its 1-0 lead as the game ended.
Kylian Mbappe joined his teammates on the sideline as he walked on with crutches, he laughed with the staff and player on the bench. Fans will be hoping the injury isn’t as bad as thought.
PSG coach expressed his disappointment at the way St Ettienne players started the game “ It was complicated with all the fouls to Thilo Kehrer, Neymar, and Mbappe. In the last three matches against St Etienne, they get a red card in the first 30 minutes, I don’t know what is being said in their dressing room. It is horrible. I cant understand it.”
“We won, and we have a lot of things to improve, to talk about, and analyse.”
PSG are on the verge of winning a quadruple with the league already awarded to them and the League cup and Champions League still to play.