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PSG hit back with Dijon victory

Publish on 12/03/2019 at 00h00 - S. WILLIS

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PSG put their UCL elimination behind them with a rousing 4-0 win in their rescheduled Ligue 1 Conforama Week 18 match in Dijon on Tuesday, Kylian Mbappé getting his 25th of the season to the scene for Sunday's Classique.

Dijon FCO 0 - 4 Paris Saint-Germain Logo Paris Saint-Germain

THE MATCH
Although Paris Saint-Germain's main supporter groups boycotted the trip to Dijon in protest against the club's shock UEFA Champions League elimination to Manchester United, coach Thomas Tuchel and his men turned up in every sense of the word, calmly playing their game and restoring normal service with a bevy of goals to restore their 17-point lead atop the Ligue 1 Conforama standings.

The signs were good for Tuchel and his more-or-less full-strength side as the Classique against arch-rivals OM at the Parc des Princes looms on Sunday, with Marquinhos opening the scoring with a superb angled header (7') and Mbappé streaking further ahead on the scoring chart after tackling his 25th of the campaign (and 30th of the season in all competitions) into the back of the net (40').

Di Maria: Third direct free-kick of the season

At the heart of both the first-half strikes, Angel Di Maria got his goal with a trademark stunning free-kick that crashed in off Runar Alex Runarsson's left-hand post just after the break (50'). Although Dijon never gave up, their only chance in the second half was a snap-shot from Jules Keita that Alphonse Areola smothered smartly (90'), just minutes before Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting tapped home Thomas Meunier's low cross to round out the scoring with just his second goals for the capital club (90'+2).

Paris remain well clear atop the Ligue 1 Conforama standings, 17 points clear of LOSC and with their postponed Week 28 clash with Nantes in hand, while Dijon remain on track for a relegation play-off in 18th, six points shy of 17th-placed Monaco, with a crunch clash with bottom club Guingamp at the weekend.

THE PLAYER: Angel Di Maria
In the continued absence of superstars Neymar and Edinson Cavani, and under the watchful; gaze of club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi, Di Maria proved once again that he's worth every bit of the €63m the club paid for him - when he signed from UEFA Champions League bugbears Manchester United in 2015. Ostensibly played up front alongside Mbappé in a 3-5-2, the Argentine's free-roaming play and quality on the ball led to the first two goals, with PSG's third a masterpiece from the dead-ball maestro. Doubtless Tuchel - and the team - will be looking to Di Maria to bring more of the same against Marseille on Sunday night.

THE STAT: 5
France prodigy Mbappé has now scored in five Ligue 1 Conforama matches in a row, adding a gob-smacking total of seven goals to his account for the season since his stunning winner in Saint-Etienne in mid-February. His 25-goal tally in the league is the club's fourth-highest in a single season, after Zlatan Ibrahimovic (38), Carlos Bianchi (37) and Edinson Cavani (35), and he will doubtless play a key role at the Parc as Rudi Garcia and his men coming calling.