Paris Saint-Germain had to withstand jeers from their own supporters as Kylian Mbappé scored a brace in a 5-1 win over Lorient. ‘Les Parisiens’ restored their 12-point lead at the top of Ligue 1 (L1), meaning it’s surely only a matter of time before they reclaim their crown as French champions.
Mauricio Pochettino was coming under increasing pressure after his side lost three of their last four games before the international break. A positive response was required, and Danilo Pereira squandered a huge chance to make the perfect start when he failed to direct his close-range header on target. However, it only took PSG 12 minutes to take the lead, as the most star-studded front three in world football combined, with Neymar eventually applying a cool finish to break the deadlock.
Just shy of the half-hour mark, ‘Les Parisiens’ doubled their advantage. Provider of the first goal, Kylian Mbappé, had no interest in being outshone as he shaped to curl his shot towards the far post before snapping it into the other corner, totally deceiving Matthieu Dreyer. A sobering first half left Lorient in damage limitation mode after HT, as they looked to protect their goal difference.
The hosts’ tempo nosedived after the interval, and they were punished for their complete lack of concentration by conceding another calamitous goal. Achraf Hakimi’s dreadful square pass to Marquinhos was wayward, and Terem Moffi took full advantage to stab home beyond the slow-to-react Gianluigi Donnarumma.
As ever, it was up to Mbappé to drag Pochettino’s men out of the mire. The 23-year-old displayed remarkable footwork to skip past a defender before rifling his effort into the bottom corner from the edge of the box. The Frenchman turned provider moments later, as he held off numerous challenges before teeing up Lionel Messi to find the top corner. The Argentinian scored for the first time in eight league games, avoiding his worst drought since 2008 in the process.
Neymar added a glorious fifth as PSG secured a comfortable victory, but all was not well, as Sergio Ramos was booed with every touch of the ball by the home faithful. Regardless, another victory extends their imperious L1 record at the Parc des Princes, winning 14 of their 15 home clashes this season. Their inevitable coronation as champions will see them equal Saint-Étienne as the most successful team in French top-flight history.