The Time Has Come Football Is Back In France This Friday At 9:10 P.m

The time has come: football is back in France this Friday at 9:10 p.m with the Coupe of France final between Paris SG and Saint-Etienne at the Stade of France. A first official match after the end of competition due to the coronavirus which will play in front of a few thousand supporters.

The Time Has Come Football Is Back In France This Friday At 9:10 P.m

Paris Saint-Germain kicks off their incredible summer, perhaps the most prolific in their history, with a singular Coupe of France final against Saint-Etienne on Friday 9:10 p.m, which marks the return of official competition in France in front of a tiny audience. It's a poster that smacks of the good old days, reminiscent of 1982 when PSG beat Michel Platini's Greens on penalties to win their first major title.

But 38 years later, and despite the traditional presence of the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron in the gallery, the two teams find themselves in a context marked by the Covid-19 which undermines nostalgia: it is the world of after which will take place in an almost empty Stade of France. This final of the 103rd edition of the Coupe of France, the first official meeting played in France since March 10, marks the start of an uncertain new era, which risks confusing its most loyal fans.

Binding health protocol, public limited to less than 5,000 spectators, five changes authorised, Parisians and Stephanois will give a summary of the football to come in the upcoming weeks, or even months, depending on the evolution of the pandemic. Long after its neighbours, France is back in competitive matches, which the final discontinuation of Ligue 1 had put away.

Saint-Etienne without supporting

If the wait was long, the ultras of both camps deplored the minimal access to the stands and let it known that they were going to voluntarily miss the meeting, the President of the Federation (FFF) Noel Le Graet not having failed to increase the government tonnage. "First CDF final in 38 bitter years, said one of Saint-Etienne's most prominent ultras groups, the 1991 Magic Fans, on a banner hanging from the fence at the Greens' training centre. The Loire club has also bought the meagre quota of 900 places allocated to it so that the space reserved for its supporters is empty.

In the world according to his new benchmarks, so as playing a Coupe of France final on a Friday, instead of the traditional Saturday. But an old catchphrase is likely to endure: that of Paris SG dominating French competition. A month after resuming training, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar’s team-mates have put together a smooth preparation that makes them huge favourites. With 20 goals scored, none conceded, in three friendlies, their trajectory describes a rise in power.

The goal was to arrive injury-free with fresh legs and head. We are ready to play this game. It will be the first competitive game, it's always special, but I have a feeling we are ready, said Paris coach Thomas Tuchel, who will have to do without starting left-back Juan Bernat.

PSG aim for a hat-trick

The German technician is playing big, being criticised last season for not winning a cup. He must prove that the resounding failure against Rennes 2-2 a.p., 6-5 a.b, in the final of the Coupe of France in April 2019, was just an accident. After the Greens, it will be Lyon, in the final of the League Cup on July 31, then Atalanta Bergamo, in the quarterfinal of the Champions League in Lisbon on August 12, at the opening of the final eight-man tournament, who are in the program of a club that dreams of three trophies for the summer of its fiftieth anniversary.

For Saint-Etienne, who will replay his first Coupe of France final since 1982, the gap linked to the coronavirus made it possible to evacuate the evil thoughts of 2019-2020 season ended in 17th place in L1. We are starting again on new bases. Everyone is at their peak and come back with their heads empty, forward Denis Bouanga said. The dismissal in early July of goalkeeper Stephane Ruffier, in Forez since 2011, embodies the reconstruction led by coach Claude Puel. Captain Loic Perrin, at the club since 1997, could also play his last game in the green jersey before retiring. Another way to switch to the world after.

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