World Soccer Today
Paris Saint-Germain is back on top of Ligue 1 after a solid 4-1 victory over Lens on Saturday. The capital team is two points ahead of Lyon in second place, before Lyon takes on Montpellier on Sunday. Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a good game for PSG and scored a goal from the penalty spot and assisted on the 4-1 goal by Javier Pastore.
PSG took the lead right before halftime when David Luiz slotted a home a free kick from pretty far out. It seemed like the ball might have taken a deflection as Rudy Riou in the Lens net didn’t even move. Ibrahimovic then made it 2-0 from the spot in the 60th min after Gregory van der Wiel was brought down inside the penalty area. Lens pulled one back eight minutes later when Yoann Touzghar steered one past Salvatore Sirigu.
The Parisians keep control of the game, and pushed on and Blaise Matuidi made it 3-1 in the 80th minute when he converted on a great cross from the right side by Pastore. Pastore would then score the final goal of the game, and the prettiest, just two minutes later when he banged in a volley from close range after a beautiful chip pass by Ibrahimovic.
This was Ibrahimovic’s first game back after serving a two-game suspension. The Swedish striker now has 12 league goals, and is the club’s top scorer. He’s also the captain and it’s obvious that PSG is a much more dangerous side when he’s on the pitch. Ibra’s game breaking abilities makes him a defender’s nightmare as you can never be sure what he will do next. His brilliant pass to Pastore is a great example of this as Ibrahimovic’s gets pressured by two defending Lens players and he chips the ball perfectly between them and finds Pastore, who does a great job of timing the volley and put the ball in the net.
While PSG are fighting for silverware at the top of table, Lens are stuck at the bottom of the table. They are currently second to last, with a mere 22 points in 28 games. Metz are also on 22 points, but Lens have slightly better goal deferential. They have nine points up to Lorient and safety from relegation. Unless something drastically changes and Lens goes on a winning-streak the season is pretty much over. It will be tough as the next three fixtures for Lens are Toulouse, Marseille and Bordeaux.
Next up for PSG is the second-leg match against Chelsea in the Champions League Round of 16 on Wednesday before going away to Bordeaux on Sunday. The first game against Chelsea in Paris ended 1-1 so it’s still wide open as to which team will go through to the next round. A slight advantage must be given to Chelsea as they got an important away goal in the first leg and have a strong home record with two wins and one draw in the group stage.