Courtois nets in Chelsea win over PSG

Date published: Sunday 26th July 2015 1:49

Both Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho and his PSG counterpart Laurent Blanc will have been delighted with their teams’ work out as they approach the start of their respective title defences.

However, there is no doubt that it was the Ligue 1 champions who looked the more polished of the two sides, with PSG only losing their way after making a raft of substitutions in the second half.

Before that, though, the Parisians played some impressive football, with Brazil playmaker Lucas Moura the standout performer in Charlotte, particularly in an eye-catching first-half display that saw his team lead at the break.

But it was Chelsea holding midfielder John Obi Mikel who was badly at fault for PSG’s opener after 25 minutes after the experienced Nigeria international got caught in possession on the edge of the area, with striker Jean-Kevin Augustin stealing the ball before hitting the post with a low shot.

But unfortunately for Mikel the rebound fell straight at the feet of PSG captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic, with the forward making no mistake with an accurate finish high into the net from six yards out past a helpless Asmir Bergovic in the Chelsea goal.

Thereafter it was PSG who dictated the tempo of the game in front of a large crowd in the US, with new Chelsea goalkeeper Begovic being called upon on several occasions to keep the scoreline at 1-0 as the Bosnian, recently signed from Stoke City, denied the likes of both Augustin and Lucas before the interval.

And for much of the second period the pattern of play continued in one direction, towards the Chelsea goal, although this time occupied by first-choice goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, but without PSG ever testing the big Belgian to the same extend as they had Begovic before the break.

Then, seemingly out of nowhere, the Premier League champions equalised through the one piece of play befitting their status, following a swift counterattack and a delicious lofted ball to the back post by Cesc Fabregas to pick out the unmarked Victor Moses, who made no mistake with a controlled finish from close range after 65 minutes.

However, despite there still being a quarter of the contest to play, the match petered out amid a raft of changes, as so often happens in friendlies like these as both coaches took the chance to cast their eyes over new players, resulting in the game going to penalties.

Both sides missed one spot kick before we went to sudden death – Juan Cuadrado first for Chelsea, followed immediately by Jean-Christophe Bahebeck for PSG – before Thiago Silva’s weak effort was easily saved by Courtois, giving the goalkeeper himself the opportunity to fire powerfully into the net and hand his side the win.

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