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Fekir pulls strings as Lyon beat PSG

Publish on 03/02/2019 at 00:00 - S. WILLIS

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Nabil Fekir was architect-in-chief as he orchestrated Olympique Lyonnais' 2-1 win over Paris Saint-Germain in Sunday's top-of-the-bill Week 23 encounter and handed the league leaders their first top-flight loss this term.

  Olympique Lyonnais 2-1 Paris Saint-Germain Logo Paris Saint-Germain

THE MATCH
PSG had romped home 5-0 when the sides had met earlier in the season with Kylian Mbappé scoring four times — the France striker should have added another to his tally within 60 seconds of kick-off, but after sweeping in behind Marcelo, his shot lacked the power and precision to seriously trouble Anthony Lopes (1').

Mbappé did not have to rue the miss for long as the Lyon goalkeeper was soon beaten. Julian Draxler picked the ball off the foot of Hossem Aouar, and teed up Angel Di Maria just inside the penalty area — the Argentina international sent a shot across Lopes and into the far corner (7').

The former Real Madrid and Manchester United man's fifth league goal of the season — and PSG's 1000th since they were purchased by Qatar Sports Investments — made it an ideal start for the visitors, but Lyon quickly bounced back.

Areola saves

Memphis Depay's cutback was fired goalwards by Bertrand Traoré only for Alphonse Areola to kick it away (18'), and the France international goalkeeper then threw himself to his right to paw aside Fekir's long-range effort (20') before thwarting Depay (24').

Fekir saw another shot kept out (30') before Lyon deservedly levelled. Fekir was central as he played Léo Dubois down the right, and Dembélé beat Areola to the full-back's cross to head in his seventh league goal of the season (33').

When Dembélé went down under Thiago Silva's challenge shortly after the break, Fekir sent Areola the wrong way from the penalty spot to give the hosts the advantage (49') and leave PSG chasing the game.

Unbeaten run ended

And the champions chased. Dani Alves seized onto a poor clearance and fed Mbappé, who skipped beyond Dubois to test Lopes (52'). The Lyon number one blocked another Mbappé angled shot with his feet (72') as he remained on top in his duel with the PSG number 7.

Areola did the same to deny Dembélé a second (85') to keep PSG hoping, but he could not prevent the reigning champions' 21-game unbeaten run from coming to an end as their lead at the top of the table was cut to ten points, and Lyon gave themselves breathing room in third.

THE PLAYER: Nabil Fekir
The Lyon captain was involved in both goals in his team's 2-1 defeat of PSG last term, and repeated the trick here. Once again, he fully justified not only his billing as a top-level performer, but also coach Bruno Genesio's decision to give him the chance to lead by example.

THE STAT: 14
Lyon have won 14 and lost just three of their last 25 Ligue 1 Conforama home games against PSG.