PSG wins against Toulouse and wins the Champions Trophy in a sad atmosphere

At the Parc des Princes, which the Professional Football League tried unsuccessfully to make “neutral”, Paris won its 12th Champions Trophy against Toulouse on Wednesday (2-0).

France Télévisions – Sports Editorial



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PSG won their 12th Champions Trophy thanks to their 2-0 victory against Toulouse on January 3, 2024, at the Parc des Princes.  (FRANCK FIFE / AFP)

A 12e Champions Trophy for Paris (10e of the Qatari era), and a first trophy for Luis Enrique on the PSG bench, that’s all we will remember from the match between the last Ligue 1 champion and the last winner of the Coupe de France, Toulouse, on Wednesday January 3 (2-0). The Parisians won an unspectacular match both on the field and in the stands, boycotted by the ultra supporters of the two clubs for the return of the Champions Trophy to France after 15 years of international export.

The Ultras Paris Collective planned “a stadium without life, which should remind (the LFP) of previous editions in China, the United States, or elsewhere”, and he wasn’t really wrong. Without the presence of the main sections of Parisian and Toulouse supporters, the Parc des Princes sometimes sounded hollow, mainly only being enthusiastic about the actions of Kylian Mbappé or to whistle at the Toulouse residents. Because if the Champions Trophy is usually held on neutral ground, the Violets may feel wronged.

The LFP, organizer of the match, tried to make the Parc des Princes “neutral”, with the presence of speakers from both clubs and the Toulouse anthem played on the sound system 45 minutes before kick-off, but the Porte d’Auteuil stadium was 80% committed to the cause of the Parisians. PSG had also been responsible for selling tickets to the general public. “Clearly, we are not on neutral ground. We met a few Toulouse residents and many hide their jerseys or scarves, like when we are outside”Julien told us, sitting near the stadium with friends, who were among the 2,600 Toulouse residents who made the trip while more than 6,000 seats were on sale at the TFC ticket office.

The red and blue colors were omnipresent, with PSG advertisements still displayed on the stadium gates, even if Pierre-Antoine and Bastien, regulars at the Parc des Princes, noticed “fewer PSG mobile shops than usual”. Like them, other Parisian supporters, Dominique and Kevin, found “unfortunate that the return of the Champions Trophy to France takes place under these conditions. Paris is favored.”

Kylian Mbappé, main crowd agitator

Inside the Parisian arena, the LFP tried to warm up the atmosphere with a little pyrotechnics, but the atmosphere remained much less explosive. Faced with fairly silent Parisian stands, Toulouse supporters even took the liberty of teasing their opponents by singing. “We are at home” before kick-off. In the pouring rain, however, they were quickly showered by Kang-in Lee’s very quick opening score, on a cross from Ousmane Dembélé (3e). They then continued to make themselves heard at times in a silent Parc des Princes, while their players struggled to cross the halfway line.

But at a time when we were hearing more from the Toulouse residents than the Parisians, Kylian Mbappé, who had already harangued the public to call for more support, turned into a presenter on the field, with a dry strike which ended at the bottom fillets (44e). A 111e goal at the Parc des Princes which allowed him to become the top scorer in the history of PSG within the Porte d’Auteuil enclosure. The Violets, in difficulty in the championship with a play-off place (16th), did not have the same success. Their striker Thijs Dallinga came close to reducing the score on several occasions, but Gianluigi Donnarumma was decisive with his 5 saves.

A little more enthusiastic at the end of the match, the Parc des Princes warmed up with the help of Luis Enrique, who offered his first minutes to Brazilian rookie Lucas Beraldo, who entered at 70e minute and applauded with each touch of the ball. Both therefore won their first trophy with Paris Saint-Germain at the end of an evening which will perhaps make the LFP – of which no representative was present to present the medals to the players – want to relocate the Trophy again champions.

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