Bordeaux Retain Trophee des Champions With Narrow Guingamp Win

Goals from Fernando Cavenaghi and Fernando helped Bordeaux retain the Trophee des Champions, kicking off the season on a positive note.
Girondins de Bordeaux 2-0 Guingamp

The reign of Girondins de Bordeaux as French champions kicked off with a somewhat unspectacular success over Ligue 2 Guingamp in the Trophee des Champions – the French Supercup. A rather dour game played out in Montreal, Canada, will likely have done little for the reputation of the French game in the region, but Bordeaux will not be overly concerned, having claimed a 2-0 victory thanks to a first half Fernando Cavenaghi goal and a stoppage time second from Fernando.

Bordeaux head coach Laurent Blanc gave a show of faith to want-away striker Marouane Chamakh, who started the match and did not let his team-mates down, working industriously as ever alongside strike partner Cavenaghi. There were also debuts for Jaroslav Plasil and Cedric Carrasso for les Giorndins, while Guingamp’s side was dramatically altered from the one that claimed an unlikely cup success.

When the Breton outfit triumphed at the Stade de France in the late spring, Brazilian forward Eduardo provided much of their cut-and-thrust in attack. Now departed, his presence was sorely lacking as they failed to seriously test Carrasso all evening.

Not that Bordeaux were a great deal better for the most part, with the opening half hour being played out with only a couple of efforts on goal – neither of which even managed to find the target. Set plays appeared to be the best hope for a goal, Bordeaux ace Yoann Gourcuff dangerously delivering a handful of set-plays into the Ligue 2 side’s penalty area to no avail.

Indeed, the opening 37 minutes would pass largely without incident, though the first real action of the game would yield the opening goal. Superb play from Girondins left-back Benoit Tremoulinas saw him shake the shackles of his market before cutting a ball into the box for the prolific Cavenaghi to touch and strike home.

This effort prompted a flurry of activity in front of the Guingamp goal, and it would also mark a watershed point in the match as the Bretons never really threatened having gone behind. Gourcuff fizzed a fine effort narrowly over a couple of minutes before the break as the Aquitaine side looked to push further ahead.

Half-time seemed to kill their attacking momentum somewhat. A strong run from the former Milan man instigated an opening for Wendel, whose shot smacked against a defensive body and would run out for a fruitless corner.

Eleven minutes from time, Chamakh thought he had grabbed a crucial second goal, lifting the ball over Stephane Trevisan having been played through, but the assistant referee’s flag denied him.

If the Moroccan’s personal crusade would come to naught, Bordeaux’s would not, as substitute Fernando reacted quickest to shoot home after a fine Gourcuff free kick had clattered off the post.

Once again the influence of Gourcuff proved crucial for Bordeaux, with virtually all of their best play flowing through him. He directed and prodded his team towards a tough victory that was never really called into doubt by their opponents, though the tight nature of the scoreline ensured that there was always a degree of interest in what was a disappointing fixture overall.

Laurent Blanc will be pleased to have got this massive banana skin out of the way and will now doubtless be focusing on signing a new centre-back before the league campaign begins in a fortnight’s time. Last season kicked off with the club claiming this trophy, and Blanc will hope it is an omen that similar success can be enjoyed by les Marin et Blancs this time around.

Robin Bairner,