Paris Saint-Germain left it late, but their 1-0 victory over Evian Thonon Gaillard on Wednesday night moves them within touching distance of their third Ligue 1 championship crown.
Evian started the brighter of the two sides, and PSG looked to be struggling from a hangover after winning the Coupe de la Ligue at the weekend. They struggled to implement their quick and accurate passing style against the side placed 15th in the Ligue 1.
There were few chances in a first-half, which seemed to suggest that the Parisian players were already thinking about being crowned the 2013/14 champions. Their job was far from done, though.
For Laurent Blanc’s side the task was made that little bit tougher when Evian were reduced to 10 men after Kassim Abdallah received his second yellow card for a rash challenge on PSG left-back Lucas Digne. With the away side a man down for the better part of half an hour, any space that PSG had enjoyed was gone and Evian set about defending Jesper Hansen’s goal.
Just when it looked like the away side were going to hold on, substitute Blaise Matuidi provided the vital touch when it mattered most. After an excellent through ball from fellow substitute Lucas Moura, the French international jabbed the ball between Hansen’s legs and across the line.
The three points mean PSG are now 10 points clear of AS Monaco with four games to go, and victory against FC Sochaux on Sunday will secure the Ligue 1 title with three games to go. Then— and only then—can the players officially relax. However, with Sochaux in the middle of a relegation battle, it won’t be plain sailing for Blanc's side.
Read on for a few more things we learned from Wednesday’s narrow victory.