Nene and PSG denied top spot
Nene moved level with Moussa Sow on 13 goals at the top of the scoring chart with a brace against his former club Monaco. PSG missed out on first place in Ligue 1 as Daniel Niculae levelled at 2-2 two minutes from time.
Monaco have been PSG’s bogey team in recent times and Guy Lacombe’s strugglers have now gone six league games unbeaten against the capital club. Sébastien Pugrenier put Monaco in front on 32 minutes but Nene (40’ and 52’) seemed to have worked his magic yet again for PSG, only for Niculae to snatch a point for the visitors and deny PSG top spot ahead of the Sunday fixtures.
Snowy conditions made playing good football at the Parc des Princes a tall order. Monaco have been making heavy weather of their league season but stopped the clock on their Ligue 1 goal drought at 485 minutes as Puygrenier expertly lobbed PSG goalkeeper Apoula Edel after a Monaco free kick.
Monaco ‘keeper Stéphane Ruffier had previously saved well from Clément Chantôme and Ludovic Giuly but was unable to do anything to prevent former team-mate Nene equalising with a sumptuous 20m volley five minutes before the interval. The in-form Brazilian was on the scoresheet for the fourth consecutive Ligue 1 game.
On the resumption PSG continued where they had left off and were very much in the ascendancy when Nene struck again, finding the side netting with an expert left-footed finish. Signed from Monaco in the close-season, the 29-year-old has proved an outstanding acquisition and this was a reminder to Monaco of the capabilities of the player who top scored for them last campaign.
Monaco attempted to reply but left space in behind their defence as they pushed forward. Ruffier prevented the game being put beyond the visitors as he saved well from Giuly with twenty minutes left on the clock. The importance of that save was underlined when Chris Malonga set up Daniel Niculae for the equaliser. A precise finish from the Romanian earned Monaco a point yet they remain without a win since Week 12.
PSG are behind Lille at the top on goal difference but distance could be placed between the clubs with the leaders hosting Nancy on Sunday.