Digne’s late strike lifts PSG over Benfica

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TORONTO, Canada: Lucas Digne scored in the 79th minute to lift French champions Paris Saint-Germain to a 3-2 victory over Benfica on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) in the International Champions Cup friendly tournament.

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Digne unleashed a powerful left-footed shot that substitute goalkeeper Paulo Lopes could barely get a hand to, securing the victory before a crowd of 17,843 at BMO Field, home of Major League Soccer’s Toronto FC.

Teenaged midfielder Jean-Kevin Augustin in the 29th minute and Brazil’s Lucas Moura from the penalty spot in the 64th also scored for Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), while Brazilians Anderson Talisca and Jonas scored for the Portuguese champions.

Talisca’s 34th-minute strike made it 1-1, while Jonas connected in the 42nd minute to put Benfica ahead.

After a clumsy challenge by Benfica’s Jardel brought Christophe Nkunku down in the box, Moura equalized, converting the ensuing penalty with a right-footed shot that saw Benfica keeper Julio Cesar dive the wrong way.

The Portuguese side nearly grabbed an equalizer in the 87th, but Nelson Oliveira’s shot was pushed over the ball by goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu.

PSG manager Laurent Blanc, still resting many of his top players, was pleased with the victory by a youthful squad.

“The young players played well,” he said.

Based in New Jersey for their North American visit, PSG next play Fiorentina on Tuesday before matches against Chelsea and Manchester United.

Benfica will play Fiorentina, Major League Soccer’s New York Red Bulls and Mexico’s Club America.

AFP

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