50th anniversary : Paris Saint-Germain's origins (11/12)
Paris Saint-Germain celebrated its 50th birthday on Wednesday! In Part 11 of our 12-part series, we celebrate another key date in the club's history: 23 August.
It was 50 years to the day that Paris Saint-Germain played their first competitive game, travelling to Poitiers for their opening match in France's second division.
It was a chance for five players, Camille Choquier, Jean-Claude Fitte-Duval, Bernard Béreau, Michel Prost and Bernard Guignedoux, to avenge a 3-1 Coupe de France defeat to Poitiers as part of a Stade Sangermanois side the previous season.
The Parisians were better technically, but struggled to gel as a team and Alain Pedini put the hosts ahead (30'). Paris Saint-Germain levelled after the break thanks to a Guignedoux free-kick that found the top corner, and made him the club's first ever goalscorer in a competitive fixture (69').
Choquier saved his team by denying Hervé Gauthier (81') and then Pedini came desperately close to registering a brace, but struck the crossbar (87').
Henri Patrelle was aware of the difficulties PSG would face in their maiden season: "We're the team to beat, and every Sunday, we're going to meet opponents like Poitiers, read to play the match of their lives. Our task is a tough one."
That first goal on 23 August 1970, Guignedoux will never forget: "There was a free-kick 20 metres out that the referee made us take again because opponents came out of the wall. I hit it hard and it found the top-left corner. The club was a work in progress, it wasn't the same era as now. There was a great team spirit, more of a collective spirit than an individual one among the players. There was also a lot less pressure on the club and the fans, we played for playing's sake, not to make a career. We talked with everyone, with all the fans, even those of our opponents."
STADE POITEVIN FC - PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN FC: 1-1 (1-0)
Sunday 23 August 1970
Championnat de France National - Central Division - Round 1
Stade de la Pépinière (Poitiers) - 4 022 fans
Goals: Pedini (30'); Guignedoux (69')
PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN: Choquier - Fitte-Duval, Guicci, Mitoraj, Djorkaeff (c) - Destrumelle, Béreau - Brost (Rémond, 74'), Prost, Guignedoux, Bras.