Politics

Neymar double lifts PSG to 3-2 win at Bordeaux

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BORDEAUX, France — Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) stretched their advantage at the top of Ligue 1 to 10 points after two goals by Brazil forward Neymar and another from Kylian Mbappe helped them to a 3-2 win at Girondins Bordeaux on Saturday.

PSG, who carved out a 3-0 lead before late goals by Bordeaux set up a tense finish, have 34 points from 13 games, ahead of second-placed Lens who beat Troyes 4-0 at home on Friday. Bordeaux stayed 16th on 12 points.

Neymar struck twice in the first half thanks to a pair of sublime assists by France World Cup winner Mbappe, having opened the scoring in the 26th minute with a neat shot past two defenders inside the near post.

Neymar muted his celebrations and took off his jersey to unveil a message on his shirt paying tribute to Brazilian country singer Marilia Mendonca, who was killed in a plane crash in the state of Minas Gerais on Friday.

The second goal was of superior quality as Neymar raced down the left and exchanged a one-two with Mbappe, who set up the Brazilian with a cheeky back-heel for a clinical finish into the bottom corner.

Mbappe made it 3-0 with a simple goal as Georginio Wijnaldum beat the offside trap and squared the ball to the forward who rolled it into an empty net in the 63rd minute, with Bordeaux goalkeeper Benoit Costil stranded.

The home side pulled one back in the 79th minute as striker Alberth Elis held off his marker and beat visiting keeper Kaylor Navas from close range and PSG were forced to hang on after M’Baye Niang netted in stoppage time.

Mbappe acknowledged that an expensively assembled PSG outfit, who were missing Lionel Messi due to a niggling knee injury, were still a work in progress but rebuffed criticism that they are failing to live up to expectations.

“Everyone has the right to an opinion, some people think we are playing badly but I think we are just not playing very well at the moment,” he said.

“We need to improve and we will continue to work hard. Today, we showed our quality as we had spells where we played at a very high level.

“The goals we conceded were avoidable, but in the end we felt comfortable. We try to improve every day and we hope that we will get better and better.” — Reuters