Paris Saint-Germain

PSG fall to Lille in Trophee des Champions

Tom Gott
Lille beat PSG in the Trophee des Champions
Lille beat PSG in the Trophee des Champions / EMMANUEL DUNAND/Getty Images

Paris Saint-Germain got their 2021/22 season off to a rough start as they fell to Lille in the season-opening Trophee des Champions.

PSG earned their place in France's equivalent of the Community Shield by winning the Coupe de France last year, knocking eventual Ligue 1 champions Lille out of the competition in the process.

The Parisians had won this trophy in each of the last eight seasons, but Lille pipped them to the honour this time around with a 1-0 victory in Tel Aviv.

Pochettino named a heavily rotated side, with big names like Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Marco Verratti, Marquinhos and new signing Gianluigi Donnarumma all missing the game and, as you might expect, they looked somewhat disjointed from the start.

The two sides exchanged chances in the first half, but seconds before the whistle blew, Lille fired themselves ahead courtesy of a worldie from midfielder Xeka, who fired a gorgeous strike past Keylor Navas and into the back of the net.

PSG did their best to get back into the game after the break but were so wasteful in front of goal. Striker Mauro Icardi was particularly underwhelming as he failed to ask any real questions of the Lille backline, although he did have a goal ruled out for offside.

The only real positives for Pochettino were the performances of Achraf Hakimi and second-half substitute Georginio Wijnaldum, both of whom made real impacts during their time on the pitch.

"I think we were the best team on the pitch tonight," Pochettino said after the game (via beIN Sports). "But we failed to realize our opportunities, and to win in football, you just have to score.

"It's a new season, I'm happy with the attitude of my players, and we'll be better when we have the full squad available. I have never doubted the involvement of my players. We wanted to win tonight, we did everything to win, we played the players who could."