“I’m happy at PSG (Paris Saint-Germain).”
Lee said after the win. It was the second title of his career. But it was an emotional one that couldn’t be compared to the first.
PSG won the 2023 French Super Cup with a 2-0 victory over Toulouse at the Parc des Princes in Paris, France on Thursday (July 4).
The Trophée des Champions is a one-off match between the winner of the French Ligue 1 and the winner of the cup competition. Last season’s Ligue 1 champions, PSG, faced off against Toulouse, who won the cup.
The star of the match was Lee Kang-in. He scored the opening and final goals and was named the Super Cup’s Most Valuable Player (MOM) after the game. Initially, Lee postponed his call-up to the 2023 Asian Cup in Qatar for the Super Cup. When European players like Son Heung-min and Hwang Hee-chan joined the South Korean national team after their last game in December, Lee remained in France. He was there to help PSG win the title.
In a post-match interview, Lee said, “I wanted to bring home the French Super Cup. I had the desire to win even before the game. I always tried to help the team, and I worked really hard. Playing with the best players in the world helped me a lot. I’m trying to learn a lot from my teammates. I wanted to win before the match. I’m happy to win and enjoy this day. I always try to help the team and train hard. I try to learn from good players. I’m very happy to be at PSG.”
With Lee’s performance, PSG won their 12th Super Cup trophy. It is the most Super Cup wins in French soccer history.
Lee started the match. He made his presence felt right from the start. In the first three minutes, PSG scored the first goal of the game. Ousmane Dembele broke down the right flank and crossed to Lee. Lee calmly finished and found the back of the net. It was his third goal of the season and PSG’s first of 2024.
PSG took full control with an early goal from Lee Kang-In. Toulouse rattled Paris Saint-Germain with intermittent counter-attacks, but goalkeeper Donnarumma shone. In the third minute, PSG followed their scoring pattern and rattled the Toulouse flank. It wasn’t a shot on target, but it was enough to send a chill down Toulouse’s spine. PSG pressured Toulouse with high ball possession.
Lee provided the firepower with a lot of activity and aggression from the back. He exchanged one-two passes with Barca to get into Toulouse territory, steadily breaking down the flanks and trying to create chances.
He linked up well with full-back Hakimi, and when Hakimi played a straight line into the Toulouse box, he dropped down one space and was ready to shoot. His pass seemed to find the toe of Lee’s foot, but he was unable to get a shot away.
Lee was influential throughout the PSG attack. This time, he teamed up with midfield teammate Vitinha. When Vitinha sent in a cross, Lee chest-trapped the ball to keep Toulouse on their toes and found the back of the net with a stunning Caesar kick.
Lee then added to the PSG attack with a set piece. In the second half, he combined with Mbappe and Hakimi to lead the Paris Saint-Germain attack. Luis Enrique made several changes to his lineup, bringing on Marco Asensio, Randall Kolo Moani, and Verraldo, but he kept Lee on the field.
On that day, Lee played the full game and helped PSG win the title. After the game, he was named the French Super Cup’s Most Valuable Player. The trophy came just five months after joining PSG.
Lee had previously won the Copa del Rey with Valencia in the 2018-19 season. However, he was not a first-team player then. This time around, he is more than just a starter for PSG, he is a key part of the team. He scored the winning goal himself to help PSG win the title.
His passing stats were also near perfect, with a 96% success rate (26/27). Local French media have also been full of praise for Lee. “PSG got off to the perfect start in the French Super Cup with Lee’s goal,” wrote Foot Mercato. It showed how good he has been this season.”
Another French outlet, GetFrenchFootball, said, “The goal rocked the net just three minutes into the game. Lee put Toulouse under pressure with a stunning bicycle kick. It was a complete turnaround from his poor form earlier in the season. He was on the verge of being called up to the South Korean national team for the Asian Cup. PSG’s all-round midfielder.”