Paris Saint-Germain bounce back from their defeat against Lorient with a 3-1 win against Troyes that eases the pressure of the title race and sees Christophe Galtier’s side go six points clear at the top of the table.
In a match which was surrounded by the context of the aftermath of Lionel Messi’s suspension and the subsequent fallout with PSG’s ultras, it was Kylian Mbappé who scored in the eighth minute early on to settle any on-pitch tension for Les Parisiens.
Christophe Galtier’s side expectedly dominated possession in the first half, and had a multitude of chances to double the score as the Parisians looked to break down a compact Troyan defensive block that, in times, sat in their own box. However, Donnarumma had to be on hand to deny Mama Baldé on two occasions, one of which was a dangerous low-driven header just before the break with the cross provided by Chavalerin.
Vitinha provided the all-important second goal for the Parisiens, which was well-served by a pinpoint Verratti cross as the Portuguese native finished on the second attempt. Xavier Chaverlarin’s flicked header in the 82nd minute gave some hope for PSG’s title rivals and hosts in the Champagne region, but Fabián Ruiz’s driven strike from range meant the Parisians could end the game in a somewhat harmonious fashion.
Chavalerin, 5 – Was part of what was quite a passive midfield performance from Troyes, which found itself mostly defending in their own box. Completely overran by the three of Vitinha, Verratti, and Ruiz. However, was in the right place to flick past Donnarumma to give hope to the hosts.
Mama Baldé, 6 – Had the most dangerous chances in the first-half for the Troyans and continued to try and offer himself as a threat as the home side’s top scorer, but found himself isolated at times and not certainly aided by the defensive strategy put in place by Patrick Kisnorbo.
Odobert, 6 – The former PSG man combined well with Mama Baldé in Troyes’ chances but they were too limited, was frustratingly limited by his defensive obligations out wide as PSG asserted themselves on the game.
Others: Thierno Baldé 5, Pape Ndiaga Yade 5
Donnarumma, 6 – Great save to deny Baldé just before half time, and was good in distribution albeit against a low-block Troyes side which didn’t particularly trouble PSG in possession whilst in their own half.
Zaïre-Emery, 7 – Impressive performance at right-wing back for the teenager. As well as being assured on the ball and offering an interesting wide option, he was up to the physicality of his position, winning what felt like every duel in the first half. In the second half he was more involved in possession and looked equally assured.
Vitinha, 6 – Played very high up the pitch and was slow to get going in the first half, he however offered a meaningful threat in the second – his runs from deep looked to split open a rigid ESTAC defensive block. He finished well on the rebounded second attempt for his goal.
Mbappé, 6 – His quick reactions were vital in the opener for PSG as the Troyan defence went to sleep. Was active in the first half and the biggest threat for PSG, as per usual with the Frenchman. His goal means he draws level with Alex Lacazette in the Ligue 1 goalscorer chart.
Ekitike, 5 – Did what he needed to do in terms of his defensive obligations and offered himself as an option, but it once again wasn’t quite the #Pivotgang connection with Kylian Mbappé that we were looking for.
Others: Carlos Soler 5, Gharbi, 5
GFFN | George Boxall