Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc admitted his players were “in pain on the pitch” as they overcame cellar dwellers Valenciennes 1-0 in Ligue 1.
• Johnson: Cavani on target as PSG edge Valenciennes
The reigning champions were forced to work for their victory against a club that has now suffered six-straight defeats but, in the end, a first-half Edinson Cavani goal was all that was needed to keep the capital club in second position on the table.
And following the match, Blanc pointed to the club’s long injury list and their short turnaround from last weekend’s glamour tie against Monaco as reasons behind his squad’s performance against a ‘difficult’ Valenciennes.
"[PSG were] in pain on the pitch, but also off the pitch because there are some injury problems," Blanc said.
"This was a difficult match in every sense of the word, but the main thing is to have taken the three points because there will be many matches like that this season.
"In the Monaco match we burned a lot of energy, we only had three days to recover and we lost Thiago [Silva]."
However, it has not been all bad news for PSG, with Sweden international Zlatan Ibrahimovic committing to the club for a further year.
And Blanc said the striker’s decision to renew his contract was a boost to the club’s ongoing ‘project’.
"Great players staying with Paris gives me pleasure," Blanc said.
"It shows the ambition of the club to do great things and that Ibra wanted to continue in the project of the club.
"It is good for me and the club because it is nice to see a player like this. Tonight he showed his class and that makes all the difference."