Messi reclaims top spot for PSG

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LYON, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 18: Lionel Messi of Paris Saint Germain (C) celebrates his goal during the Ligue 1 match between Olympique Lyonnais and Paris Saint-Germain at Groupama Stadium on September 18, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Marcio Machado/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)
LYON, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 18: Lionel Messi of Paris Saint Germain (C) celebrates his goal during the Ligue 1 match between Olympique Lyonnais and Paris Saint-Germain at Groupama Stadium on September 18, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Marcio Machado/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)

Paris Saint-Germain returned to top spot in Ligue 1 with a 1-0 win over Olympique Lyon on Sunday evening.

The trio of Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar Junior lined-up in attack for PSG after finding the net in the comeback win over Maccabi Haifa in the UEFA Champions League group stages.

PSG needed just five minutes to get the breakthrough after Messi picked up a clever pass from Neymar around the box and fired comfortably into the bottom-corner.

Messi looked for a brace three minutes later from a through pass by Mbappe, but Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes pulled across and parried the Argentine.

Lyon began to enjoy a lot of the ball in the middle of the first half and saw Karl Toko Ekambi drag a cutback from Alexandre Lacazette straight at the palms of PSG goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.

The Parisians were still on the back-foot later on as Lacazette’s surging attempt from a smart angle forced a save from Donnarumma before Lopes denied Mbappe at the other from a similar effort.

Lyon brought on a substitution at halftime in Johann Lepenant for Corentin Tolisso shortly before Nuno Mendes had an effort on the dummy cleared off the line.

All the earlier forays happened on the side of the host where Lacazette looked to volley in a ball into the area from Maxence Caqueret before Donnarumma smothered.

PSG regained confidence in the closing stages and saw Neymar’s low shot from a cutback by Mendes bring a save out of Lopes, with the rebound cleared by Nicolas Tagliafico.

The Parisians maintained the late momentum and Messi very nearly had his and the team’s second from a low shot off Mbappe’s cutback, but Lopes saved.

Messi closed-in again in added time when Lopes tipped his free-kick onto the bar before Danilo Pereira headed in the follow-up only for the flag to go up for offside, as it finished 1-0 to the reigning champions on Sunday evening.

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