Rennes 1 Paris Saint-Germain 3: Tuchel's Ligue 1 record stays perfect

Oleh Patric Ridge 24 September 2018 10
Rennes 1 Paris Saint-Germain 3: Tuchel's Ligue 1 record stays perfect

Paris Saint-Germain bounced back from their Champions League defeat to Liverpool as the Ligue 1 champions came from behind to beat Rennes 3-1.

Thomas Tuchel's side, without the suspended Kylian Mbappe, were trailing inside 11 minutes at Roazhon Park, but Angel Di Maria's emphatic equaliser handed them the initiative on the stroke of half-time.

The pressure told just after the hour - Thomas Meunier slotting home after Edinson Cavani, who had a goal ruled out in the first half, squandered two gilt-edged opportunities.

Former PSG man Hatem Ben Arfa gave Rennes some hope with an impressive cameo, but it was PSG who had the final say when substitute Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting added gloss to a sixth straight Ligue 1 win.

Rennes started strongly and Marquinhos' error enabled Clement Grenier to play in James Lea Siliki 10 minutes in, but the Brazil defender got back to clear off the line.

PSG's luck ran out from the resulting corner - Grenier's drilled inswinger deflecting in off Rabiot's shoulder.

Cavani had a goal disallowed for offside as PSG rallied, but Julian Draxler cut back for Di Maria to arrow home from 20 yards in the 45th minute.

Cavani should have nudged PSG ahead in a frantic opening to the second half, only for the Uruguayan to hit the woodwork before failing to convert from point-blank range.

Meunier made no such mistake in the 61st minute, however, racing onto a throughball from Neymar – who later gave his shirt to a tearful young boy who entered the pitch while the Brazilian was substituted in stoppage time – before dispatching low across Tomas Koubek.

Meunier turned provider seven minutes from time, squaring for Choupo-Moting to prod in his first PSG goal and restore their five-point cushion at the summit.


What it means: Mbappe's absence felt

Mbappe's creative spark and blistering pace has been crucial to PSG this term, with the 19-year-old already scoring five goals in all competitions. Despite the star power on show, Tuchel's side were far from at their best without the former Monaco prodigy.

Meunier adds a different dimension

Even though Cavani and Neymar failed to fire, PSG have other options and Meunier's surging run and finish, followed by a neat assist for Choupo-Moting's effort, was the perfect example. The full-back enjoyed a fantastic World Cup with Belgium and has hit the ground running this term.

Cavani misses could have proved costly

There is no doubting Cavani's goalscoring record, but the forward lacked his usual composure in front of goal and was fortunate Rennes did not make PSG pay for his profligacy.

Key Opta stats:

- Paris have won their first six Ligue 1 games of a season for the second time in their history, after also doing so last season.
- Rennes have lost 11 points after scoring the opening goal in Ligue 1 this season, the worst tally in the top flight. They are also the only team to have struck first in each of their first six Ligue 1 games in 2018-19.
- Di Maria is the only player to have been involved in at least one goal in each of the first six Ligue 1 games of this season (three assists and three goals).
- Choupo-Moting is the fourth Cameroonian player to score for PSG in Ligue 1 after Jean-Pierre Tokoto, Patrick Mboma and Modeste M'Bami.

What's next?

There are midweek fixtures for both sides, with PSG hosting Reims on Wednesday, while Rennes travel to struggling Amiens.

Tentang Penulis

Patric Ridge