Two late own goals helped Paris Saint-Germain maintain their 100 per cent record in Ligue 1 with a hard fought 2-0 win over Lyon at the Parc des Princes.
The hosts were some way off their free-flowing best, with their vaunted attacking trio of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani struggling to break down a stubborn Lyon backline for much of Sunday’s encounter.
Lyon’s resistance was finally broken with 15 minutes remaining when Marcelo got the final touch to Cavani’s flick to score an unfortunate own goal.
Cavani then saw a penalty brilliantly saved by Anthony Lopes before another own goal – this time from Jeremy Morel – added an undeserved gloss to the scoreline four minutes from time.
Lyon were left to rue their luck at either end of the field, having seen Tanguy NDombele’s thunderous second-half effort cannon against the crossbar at 0-0.
PSG will hope to continue their seemingly unstoppable march when they visit Montpellier next weekend, while Lyon will hope to bounce back from their first league defeat of the season when they host Dijon.
— PSG Officiel (@PSG_inside) September 17, 2017
Lyon looked sharp in the early stages and had a penalty appeal rejected after five minutes when NDombele went down awkwardly under pressure from Layvin Kurzawa.
The visitors threatened again shortly afterwards when Memphis Depay cut inside from the left, but his powerful drive was well gathered by Alphonse Areola.
The attacking verve that PSG so effortlessly demonstrated in the 5-0 Champions League win over Celtic in midweek was absent in the early stages, but they nearly broke the deadlock when Thiago Silva met Neymar’s low cross. The Brazilian defender could only skew his shot over the bar, though.
For much of the half, the Parisians struggled to penetrate Lyon’s resolute backline. On one of the rare occasions that they did, Neymar’s strike from the edge of the area was too close to Lopes, who comfortably parried it away.
The first opening of the second period went Lyon’s way. Nabil Fekir won the ball on PSG’s right touchline before bursting into the area, where his low shot was pushed out for a corner by Areola.
Fekir was in the thick of the action soon after when he unceremoniously hauled down Neymar on the edge of the area after a surging run. From the resulting free-kick, Lopes did well to push away Neymar’s shot, which looked destined for the top corner.
Lyon came agonisingly close to taking the lead after 67 minutes, when NDombele’s drive from 30 yards crashed back off the woodwork.
They then squandered a golden opportunity to score when Marcelo headed straight at Areola from Ferland Mendy’s teasing free-kick.
They were made to pay for that miss in the 75th minute as PSG took the lead. Substitute Giovani Lo Celso did well to create space on the left and his cross was met by Cavani, whose backheel attempt was deflected in by the unfortunate Marcelo.
Cavani, who seemingly won an argument with Neymar over who should take the spot-kick after Mendy had manhandled Mbappe in the area, missed the opportunity to get his name on the scoresheet as Lopes superbly tipped his penalty onto the bar.
But Lyon were dealt a cruel blow as Mbappe’s shot bounced back off Lopes onto the onrushing Morel, who could do nothing to prevent the ball rolling into an empty net to cement PSG’s win.
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