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Ligue 1

Ligue 1: Paris Saint-Germain Defend Trophee Des Champions

Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian defender Thiago Silva (C) holds the trophy as he celebrates with team mates after winning the French Trophy of Champions (Trophee des Champions) football match between Monaco (ASM) and Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on August 4, 2018 in Shenzhen. (Photo by Anne-Christine POUJOULAT / AFP) (Photo credit should read ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP/Getty Images)

The Super Cup of French club football is the Trophee Des Champions and this year’s edition took place at the Shenzhen Universiade Sports Center in Shenzhen, China. Most of the crowd, if not all, were backing Thomas Tushel’s Paris Saint-Germain and for the most part, they delivered in a resounding 4-0 win over Leonardo Jardim’s AS Monaco to win their sixth straight Trophee des Champions. The match was essentially a walk in the park for Paris, even when they were not even at their best in terms of finishing.

Statistically it was one way traffic, with Paris dominating shots (14 to seven), shots on goal (seven to two), possession (73 percent to 27 percent), passes (686 to 249), and pass accuracy (94 percent to 81 percent). Angel Di Maria was named Man of the Match for his brace in the 33rd minute and second minute of second half stoppage time. Other goalscorers included Christopher Nkunku (40′) and USMNT hotshot Tim Weah (67′).

The match was a watered down Ligue 1 contest in terms of relative strength. Monaco were missing Radamel Falcao, Thomas Lemar, Djibril Sidibe, Aleksandr Golovin and Danijel Subasic while PSG did not have the services of Kylian Mbappe, Presnel Kimpembe, Edinson Cavani or Alphonse Areola.

All of the main players from France’s World Cup squad who don PSG’s strip should be back and ready to go ahead of their Ligue 1 opener with SM Caen. Fabien Mercadal, the former Paris FC manager, was appointed as Caen’s new manager to replace the outgoing Patrice Garande. Given that Caen have had a reputation for standing tall against Paris, the season opener at the Parc des Princes is expected to be an invigorating one. Kickoff is scheduled for Sunday, Aug. 12 at 12 p.m. PT/3 p.m. ET and is the closer to Week 1 in the 2018-19 Ligue 1 season.

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