Week 23 review: Cavani wrests record from Zlatan

Ligue 1 Conforama > News
29/01/2018

By S. Willis

Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani became Paris Saint-Germain's all-time leading scorer on Saturday as the capital club trumped Montpellier; high-flying Lyon were brought back down to earth by Gus Poyet's Bordeaux and Saint-Etienne got a welcome win.

Cavani missed a host of chances as he looked to break the record in Paris Saint-Germain's mid-week Coupe de France clash with EA Guingamp, but against tough-defending Montpellier the goal came relatively easily, El Matador with the simplest of tap-ins to take his tally to 157 goals in all competitions for the capital club.

'A very special moment'

"It was a very special moment," said the man of the hour, who some would say has now definitively stepped out of the imposing shadow of former record holder Zlatan Ibrahimovic, although the Swede amassed his 156 strikes in 49 fewer matches (180 compared to Cavani's 229). "I felt all the joy from my teammates and saw how happy they were for me. And I felt the warmth of the fans and everyone that works at the club. It will remain engraved in my mind forever. I am lucky to have experienced such an unforgettable moment."

The goal was the Ligue 1 Conforama top scorer's 21st in 22 appearances this season, but teammate Neymar Jr, who bagged two in the win over Montpellier, is close behind on 17 goals with a whopping 11 assists, making him the most decisive player among Europe's top five leagues.

Poyet's Bordeaux buck the trend

On Sunday, Lyon were hoping to build on a big week that saw them cut PSG's lead to eight points and knock Monaco out of the Coupe de France, but Bruno Genesio's men were unprepared for the welcome they received from Gustavo Poyet's Bordeaux.

"The first half was better than I'd hoped. It's important for the future to play like that. The atmosphere was spectacular when we scored the first goal," said former Tottenham boss Poyet, who took the reins at the struggling southwestern club just a week ago and already has them in the top half of the table. "We worked on our team spirit during the week but you must take the time to train as well. At the end of the match, I told the players 'well played, I have to pay'. We're going to eat something together, and it's on me!"

Good for everyone?

Lyon were left ruing their mistakes after the 3-1 defeat at the Matmut Atlantique, but were thankful that Fabinho netted a late equaliser as Monaco snatches a late 2-2 draw with Marseille in a thriller at the Stade Vélodrome in Sunday's prime time clash.

"Given that Lyon lost their match, we told ourselves that this result favours us, but we're still disappointed even though we're proud of what we achieved, as we drew level with Lyon," said goalscorer Valère Germain, with former Monaco teammate and Fabinho also seeing the positives. "We're happy with the point. It was an evenly balanced match against a good side and the atmosphere here was pretty full-on. The confidence is starting to come back. The battle will last until the end of the season." 

Canaris, Metz on song

Meanwhile Nantes reasserted their place at the head of the race for fifth place - and scored the biggest win of the Claudio Ranieri era - with a 3-0 dismantling of PSG's mid-week Coupe de France victims EA Guingamp.  It was the only away win of the round and gave Les Canaris a three-point lead over sixth-placed OGC Nice, who fell victim to FC Metz's Nolan Roux-powered revival - Les Grenats have lost just once in their last seven in all competitions - with a 2-1 loss in the northeast.

Rennes were looking to turn consecutive wins into a winning run but came unstuck in Dijon, where Olivier Dall'oglio's men had Julio Tavares to thank for the winner in a 2-1 triumph that ended a winless run of five matches (four defeats) with 11 goals conceded in their last two outings alone.

Ntep scores on debut  as Les Verts stop rot

Saint-Etienne have been busy in the winter transfer market, and new signings Yann Mvila, Neven Subotic and Paul-Georges Ntep all featured as Jean-Louis Gasset's side broke a losing streak of three matches in all competitions by beating SM Caen 2-1. Goals from France international Ntep and substitute Jonathan Bamba cancelled out Ronny Rodelin's opener for the win that took Les Verts to 14th, two points clear of the relegation play-off spot.  

LOSC, Angers hit back

After being knocked out of the Coupe de France by Strasbourg in mid-week, LOSC claimed revenge 2-1 in the reverse fixture in the league, Edgar Ie claiming a last-gasp winner to keep Christophe Galtier's men out of the drop zone while Troyes slipped back in (after a brief stint at 15th) with a ten-man, 1-0 loss in Toulouse.

Angers SCO made it back-to-back wins at the Stade Raymond Kopa for the first time this season as they dispatched Amiens 1-0, a result that leaves the sides locked on 25 points in 16th and 15th places respectively.

 

>> VIDEO: Official match highlights of all the Week 23 action

>> Week 23 reactions - Germain: 'Maintain the pressure'

>> MATCH REPORTS

>> LEAGUE TABLES








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