PSG lose 3-2 to Cerezo Osaka in rather ugly performance

Cerezo Osaka v Paris Saint-Germain - Preseason Friendly
Cerezo Osaka v Paris Saint-Germain - Preseason Friendly / Jean Catuffe/GettyImages

In what was supposed to be smooth sailing after a goalless draw with Al-Nassr, PSG's encounter with Cerezo Osaka turned into a daunting ordeal ending in a silly 3-2 defeat at the hands of the Japanese.

The absence of star players Neymar and Kylian Mbappe left the Parisian squad vulnerable, and their offensive blunders cost them dearly against the resolute Japanese opponents.

Things are getting ugly, and they are most definitely not looking any better than from last January on, new coach or not.

Despite Hugo Ekitike's early goal, expertly set up by youngster Warren Zaire-Emery, PSG struggled to maintain their lead, succumbing to a swift response from Cerezo's Belgian talent, Jordi Croux.

Cerezo Osaka, sitting fifth in the J-League, showcased their superior form, dominating duels and applying relentless pressure, leaving little breathing room for the Parisians.

Ekitike, Zaire-Emery, and Kurzawa put in spirited efforts, but PSG found themselves dizzied by their own tempo in a sad display to watch.

While the Japanese side made several tactical changes at halftime, PSG's coach, Luis Enrique, waited until the 60-minute mark to make some (any) changes on the day, even with the Parisian squad struggling mightily against a much lesser and lower-level opponent.

Vitinha's goal gave PSG some hope, and the fact that Ekitike assisted was kinda encouraging given his first season in Paris, but it proved insufficient to spark a true revival.

A missed opportunity from Carlos Soler, sending the ball over the Japanese goalkeeper's net, was followed by another Osaka goal following a mistake by Lucas Hernandez, who saw the ball stolen by Watanabe, leading to Kitano's finish, catching Donnarumma off-guard.

Cerezo Osaka went on to scalp the French champions further with Kagawa's strike, supported by a robust intervention from Arai against Cher N'Dour's attempt of late.

As the PSG circus prepares for their next act against Inter on Tuesday, they face the daunting task of regaining their stride after this rather surprising (for the bad, undoubtedly) outcome. Fingers crossed.

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