PARIS: Unfortunate Issa Cissokho headed agonisingly into his own net in stoppage time to give Paris Saint-Germain a 1-0 win over Angers in the French Cup final at the Stade de France on Saturday (Sunday in Manila).
Extra time loomed at France’s national stadium—where French President Emmanuel Macron was among the spectators—when Cissokho turned an Angel Di Maria corner past his own goalkeeper while under pressure from Blaise Matuidi at the near post.
It was a desperately harsh way for Angers to lose, as PSG ended a frustrating season by winning a third consecutive French Cup and a record 11th overall in the centenary edition of the tournament.
“Luck was on our side tonight,” conceded PSG defender Serge Aurier. “This title is even more important because everything hasn’t been rosy this season, but we were lucky to win titles.
“It goes in the trophy cabinet so it’s magnificent.”
It joins the League Cup in the PSG trophy cabinet and provides some more consolation for the capital side after a season that will be best remembered for their failures elsewhere.
Unai Emery’s side missed out on the league title to Monaco after winning Ligue 1 in each of the previous four campaigns and exited the Champions League in humiliating fashion to Barcelona in the last 16.
That 6-1 defeat at the Camp Nou — after they had won the first leg 4-0 at home — will be a lasting stain on PSG’s reputation and that of Emery.
However, their status as domestic Cup specialists remains very much intact after this victory against a hard-working Angers side that was appearing in their first French Cup final in 60 years.
Defeat means they have still never won a major trophy, while PSG have now lifted the French Cup six times just since 2004 and have won their last 32 domestic Cup ties.
It also means Bordeaux, who came sixth in the league, go into next season’s Europa League, with Paris already assured a Champions League berth after coming second.
“When you lose it’s always cruel,” said Angers coach Stephane Moulin.
“We were only one minute away from extra time. Two words spring to mind, disappointment and great pride, because the players delivered a high quality final.
“We were up against a rival who were superior to us this evening but they were unable to show it in terms of goals.”