Chateauroux 1-3 Paris Saint-Germain: Late goals send Galtier's men through in Coupe de France

By Sports Desk January 06, 2023

Paris Saint-Germain left out their biggest stars and survived a scare to progress in the Coupe de France, earning a 3-1 win at Chateauroux on Friday.

An early goal from Hugo Ekitike was cancelled out by Natanael Ntolla before half-time, and PSG had to wait until the 78th minute for Carlos Soler to bundle home for the Ligue 1 side before Juan Bernat added some gloss to the score late on.

Christophe Galtier included 16-year-old Warren Zaire Emery in his much-changed starting line-up, with no Lionel Messi, Neymar or Kylian Mbappe as Ekitike, Pablo Sarabia and Soler were selected in attack.

Chateauroux, who play in the third tier of French football, belied their lowly position of 14th in the Championnat National with a determined showing against their celebrated opponents, but PSG ultimately made it through to the last-32 stage.

The visitors took the lead in the 13th minute when Ismael Gharbi's first-time ball from the edge of the box into the path of Ekitike allowed the young striker to finish neatly in off the left post with the outside of his right foot.

Jonathan Mexique went close for the home side with a close-range shot in the 26th minute that was deflected over by a diving Vitinha, while Paul Delecroix made a good save down to his left from a Gharbi volley shortly after.

The scores were level eight minutes before the break though after neat work down the left ended with former Lille and Saint-Etienne striker Nolan Roux pulling the ball back for Ntolla, whose goal-bound shot was deflected past Keylor Navas by 17-year-old PSG defender El Chadaille Bitshiabu.

Galtier called for more experience in the second half as Sergio Ramos and Fabian Ruiz came on just after the hour, and the coach eventually saw his team re-take the lead as Vitinha stood up a cross to the far post that allowed Ekitike to head at goal, with Soler following up from Delecroix's initial save.

Bernat made it 3-1 in stoppage time after racing onto a ball from Ruiz and firing low and hard across Delecroix to seal the victory for PSG.

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