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Friday 9 December 2016

Courtois the hero as Blues conquer PSG

Chelsea recovered from their surprise defeat to New York Red Bulls to claim their first victory of their pre-season US tour with a penalty shoot-out triumph over Paris St Germain in Charlotte.

Jose Mourinho's men, who were beaten 4-2 by the Red Bulls on Thursday, rode their luck to hold PSG to a 1-1 draw during regulation time before defeating the French champions 6-5 on penalties with goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois (right) the Blues' hero.

He saved from Jean-Christophe Bahebeck immediately after Juan Cuadrado had missed for Chelsea and then, after the shoot-out had gone to sudden death, Courtois parried Thiago Silva's spot-kick before the Belgium international stepped up to smash home the next penalty himself and seal victory.

Earlier, Zlatan Ibrahimovic gave PSG a deserved half-time lead before Victor Moses levelled things up after the break as Chelsea - for whom Radamel Falcao made his debut as a second-half substitute - enjoyed a better period.

The match could have been over as a contest by that stage though, but for the goalkeeping of Asmir Begovic in the first half at Bank of America Stadium. He did superbly to keep out Lucas Moura's deflected shot just after the half-hour before then denying teenager Augustin when one-on-one and, on the stroke of half-time, producing a finger-tip save to frustrate Lucas again.

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