Giovani Lo Celso earns PSG narrow victory over Bordeaux
Goalkeeper Alphonse Areola made several fine saves to keep the home side at bay.
Giovani Lo Celso fired Ligue 1 champions Paris St Germain to a barely-deserved 1-0 win at Bordeaux.
PSG won the title in style by thrashing closest rivals Monaco 7-1 last week, but rarely hit the same heights and owed their 11th win in 12 league matches to goalkeeper Alphonse Areola.
Areola pulled off numerous fine saves before and after Lo Celso had clinically fired the only goal with a low shot from outside the penalty area in the 76th minute.
Bordeaux made a spirited start. Brazilian forward Malcom’s shot was blocked, while both Younousse Sankhare and Jules Kounde fired further efforts from outside the penalty area wide.
PSG’s first shot on goal almost resulted in a 13th-minute opener. Lo Celso also took aim from distance and his low drive was expertly turned away by home goalkeeper Benoit Costil.
Bordeaux then threatened to take the lead as shots from outside the box by Martin Braithwaite and Malcom were both well saved by Areola.
Braithwaite also headed narrowly wide just before half-time, while PSG pair Javier Pastore and Kylian Mbappe were both wasteful in front of goal.
Pastore headed Dani Alves’ cross off target and Mbappe blazed his shot wide after being sent clear by Lo Celso’s through ball.
An inspired Bordeaux came storming out of the blocks at the start of the second half and PSG were indebted to Areola.
The France international made flying low saves to keep out Sankhare’s header from Maxime Poundje’s cross and Francois Kamano’s fizzing effort from outside the penalty area, while Braithwaite crashed another long-range effort wide.
Ligue 1’s leading goalscorer Edinson Cavani went close to his 26th of the season as he traded 20-yard shots with Sankhare, but it was Bordeaux who continued to take the fight to the champions.
Lukas Lerager’s drive was kept out by Areola, who then made another diving save to turn away Poundje’s shot and dived low to keep out Pablo’s header from Malcom’s cross.
But having ridden their luck, it was PSG who broke the deadlock in the 76th minute.
Cavani’s headed pass set up Lo Celso just outside the penalty area and the Argentina midfielder slammed a left-footed shot into the bottom corner.
Bordeaux refused to lie down, but were thwarted to the end as Nicolas de Preville went close to a headed equaliser and Gaetan Laborde’s late header was well saved by the outstanding Areola.