PSG closer to winning Ligue 1 title with undisputed star, Kylian Mbappe

Paris Saint-Germain cruised to a routine Ligue 1 win against Lorient on Sunday night, with Kylian Mbappe the undisputed star of the show at Parc des Princes.

Mbappe and Neymar each scored twice, while Lionel Messi also found the net as PSG bounced back from a 3-0 defeat in Monaco before the international break. However, Lorient did briefly threaten to make it uncomfortable when Terem Moffi made it 2-1 early in the second half.

Mbappe had set the tone early on with a driving run in from the left and a low shot across the goal that was pushed wide by Lorient goalkeeper Matthieu Dreyer. Messi, Mbappe and Neymar then combined excellently for the early breakthrough. Messi flicked on Danilo’s ball from deep into Mbappe, who in turn found Neymar, and a clinical finish followed.

Mbappe’s disguised shot at the half-hour mark, deceiving Dreyer by looking at the far post and then driving the ball in at the near post instead, doubled the lead.

There was still danger from Lorient, though. Nuno Mendes showed his pace on the cover to hook the ball away from Dango Outtara as he looked set to go through on goal.

banner

A dipping free-kick from Neymar in first-half stoppage time forced Dreyer into a not all that convincing low save, parrying just past the post.

But while PSG were dripping with finesse and quality in the opening 45 minutes, complacency and sloppiness appeared to take hold when the teams re-emerged from the break. That resulted in Lorient getting a goal back when Moffi poking in a slack back pass from Achraf Hakimi.

Mbappe personally ensured there would be no surprise comeback, restoring PSG’s two-goal cushion with a sumptuous strike of the highest quality midway through the second half. The Frenchman was unplayable, quickly making PSG’s fourth goal for Messi with a driving run through the Lorient defence and having the vision to pick out the veteran Argentine with his cut-back.

There was still time for one more PSG goal as Mbappe completed a hat-trick of assists by playing in Neymar, who gratefully converted the chance for his second of the night.

PSG player ratings

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Gianluigi Donnarumma (GK) – 5/10 – Very sharp off his line in the first half but his hesitation was costly when Lorient later pulled one back.

Achraf Hakimi (RB) – 5/10 – His poor pass to no one in particular in his own penalty area characterised PSG’s terrible start to the second half.

Marquinhos (CB) – 6/10 – Left on an island by Hakimi for the Lorient goal, but his block to stop the visitors getting another was stunning.

Presnel Kimpembe (CB) – 5/10 – Yellow carded for a woefully mis-timed tackle early in the second half.

Nuno Mendes (LB) – 7/10 – Quick to react on the cover when Ouattara threatened to go through on goal, although hurt himself in the process.

2. Midfielders

Danilo Pereira (CM) – 7/10 – Played an important role in the opening goal with his ball forward and should have scored himself with a first half header.

Leandro Paredes (CM) – 5/10 – His evening was ended after just 40 minutes as a result of knock late in the first half.

Idrissa Gueye (CM) – 7/10 – Passing accuracy was close to flawless and earns credit for an assist for PSG’s second goal.

3. Forwards

Lionel Messi (RF) – 8/10 – On the periphery at times, but finished really well for PSG’s fourth and had a big hand in the first.

Kylian Mbappe (ST) – 10/10 – Two goals, three assists and altogether unplayable. He had a stunning first half but seemed to take it personally when Lorient threatened to stage a comeback.

Neymar (LF) – 8/10 – Looked razor sharp in the first half. Scored a very well-taken goal early on but seemed to lose his edge a little after the break until popping up with his team’s late fifth.

4. Substitutes

Georginio Wijnaldum (CM) – 6/10 – Got more than half a game because of Paredes’ early injury.

Sergio Ramos (CB) – 5/10 – A rare appearance after finally getting fit but was audibly getting jeered by his own fans.