PSG extended their 100% record in Ligue 1 last night but all was not well.
Unai Emery’s men were made to work hard by Lyon and had to rely on some last-gasp defending from Thiago Silva to prevent themselves going one-nil down at the Parc de Princes.
Eventually the hosts’ pressure paid dividends as both members of Lyon’s centre-back pairing inadvertenly deflected the ball past Anthony Lopes in goal.
Marcelo and Jeremy Morel’s own goals earned PSG their sixth win from as many games but there were signs of cracks in the polish.
As the game the game approached the final quarter still goalless, there seemed to be friction between Neymar and Edinson Cavani.
First, the Uruguayan No9 wanted to take a free-kick but not could not get the ball off team-mate Dani Alves to do so.
The Brazilian right-back held onto the ball until Neymar was present then handed it to his compatriot, much to Cavani’s annoyance.
Then at 80 minutes, with PSG a goal to the good, the two forwards argued over who should take a penalty.
Cavani won out on this occasion though he missed the resulting spot-kick.
We shouldn’t make too much out of this situation as the pair celebrated the win together though many fans picked up on the tension between the two.
Perhaps it’s just a case of two goalscorers confident in their abilities, both desperately trying to score as many as possible.
Most of the game’s greatest ever forwards have had a selfish side to them and are able to separate their on-field and off-field personas.
As the world’s most expensive player, Neymar may have assumed that he would be able to pick and choose set pieces at his will.
Lionel Messi would occasionally pass up the opportunity for a hat-trick to allow Neymar the chance to score from the spot.
However, Cavani is the more experienced player and has earned his rank at PSG having scored 139 goals for the club in 206 games.
He gladly played second fiddle to Zlatan Ibrahimovic for three seasons and last year he proved he has what it takes to be the main man, scoring 49 goals in 50 games in all competitions.
Neymar may have been frustrated with his own personal performance against Lyon.
Visiting right-back Kenny Tete dealt with the Brazilian No10’s threat superbly and the Dutch international rightfully earned himself some more admirers through his accomplished display.
Comfortable victories over Celtic, Metz and Toulouse in recent weeks produced a party atmosphere among PSG’s squad — plenty of goals to share around means no problems.
But when the pressure was on, both Neymar and Cavani risked appearing unprofessional in front of the world’s cameras.
There may yet be a private duel between the two for Ligue 1’s Golden Boot, though Radamel Falcao may have something to say about that.
Emery must be careful with how he handles his superstars.
Spending big money of high-profile players has many advantages, but juggling the accompanying egos can be difficult.
Reports in France suggest that Cavani was in his car just 20 minutes after the final whistle last night and did not walk through the mixed zone as is customary.
18 points from a possible 18 means PSG are flying high but keep an eye on the synergy (or lack thereof) between the club’s two premier players.