Pablo Sarabia scored the only goal of the game as Paris Saint-Germain won 1-0 at Bordeaux, though the result was not enough to send them top of Ligue 1.
Without the injured Neymar, the suspended Kylian Mbappe and Moise Kean, who tested positive for coronavirus, the champions were a long way from their best.
However, they survived an underwhelming display against a Bordeaux side in a dismal run of form, Sarabia’s 20th-minute strike proving the difference.
The result would have sent PSG back to the top on goal difference had Lille not left it late to win 2-0 against Marseille, which kept them two points clear at the summit.
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) March 3, 2021
Sarabia should have done better with PSG’s first clear-cut chance in the 17th minute, shooting straight at Benoit Costil from Julian Draxler’s pull back.
But he made no mistake three minutes later, taking one touch to control Idrissa Gueye’s pass into the box before lashing a left-footed strike into the bottom-right corner.
Bordeaux responded well and Hwang Ui-Jo curled narrowly wide from outside the box, with the South Korean denied a minute into the second half by a scrambling Keylor Navas after the ball came into his path at the far post from a corner.
Danilo Pereira and Marquinhos got in each other’s way at the other end, failing to take advantage of Draxler’s free-kick after both had been left unmarked.
PSG continued to look vulnerable and were almost undone by a former player when Hatem Ben Arfa powered just past the left-hand post.
And they needed late heroics from Navas to preserve victory, the Costa Rica international diving to his right to keep out Jimmy Briand’s stoppage-time header.
What does it mean? – Lille still the team to beat
PSG head the chasing pack in an absorbing four-way title race, though it looked for so long as though they would return to a familiar position at the summit.
But two stoppage-time goals from Jonathan David, aided by howlers from Marseille goalkeeper Steve Mandanda, kept Lille’s noses in front.
Given the chances Bordeaux had, PSG will need to improve in the closing months of the season to overhaul them.
While Sarabia made the decisive impact, Draxler was at the heart of most of PSG’s most threatening attacks, playing four key passes in an instrumental showing.
Bordeaux slump continues
It is now eight games without a win in all competitions for Bordeaux, who sent eight of their shots off target and paid for their profligacy.
PSG visit Brest in the Coupe de France on Saturday, while Bordeaux travel to struggling Dijon in the league on Sunday.
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