PSG vs Troyes

Messi inspires shaky PSG to win over Troyes in seven-goal thriller

On Saturday, Lionel Messi scored twice to lead Paris St. Germain to a 4-3 comeback victory over Troyes, extending their advantage atop Ligue 1 to five points.

The outcome put PSG, who have gone undefeated in 35 games, ahead of second-place Lens, who defeated Toulouse 3-0 on Friday.

Mama Balde had twice given Troyes, a team in the middle of the table, the lead when Messi took over and scored his seventh Ligue 1 goal of the year and added another assist to bring his total to 10, which is a league high.

Troyes stunned the Parc des Princes crowd after PSG made a sluggish start. Abdu Conte sprinted down the touchline to deliver a cross into the box, where Rony Lopes set up the opportunity for Balde to volley into the net.

PSG was tormented by Troyes, but the home team maintained their composure, and it paid off in the 24th minute when Neymar identified Carlos Soler making a run and scooped a through ball into the area for the Spanish midfielder to round goalkeeper Gauthier Gallon and score.

Seven minutes into the second half, Balde gave Troyes the advantage again by turning after receiving a cross and shooting low past goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.

When he attempted to beat PSG’s high line but was stopped by the linesman’s offside flag, he might have added a third goal, but Messi immediately stole the show.

The Argentine initially fired a scorching shot from close to 30 metres out to tie the score. Minutes later, he changed roles and assisted Neymar’s goal as PSG took the lead for the first time in the game.

Following a mix-up with the defence, Gallon took Soler down in the box, and Kylian Mbappe added to the scoring with a penalty as PSG’s star-studded attacking trio all scored.

Ante Palaversa took advantage of poor marking to score a goal for Troyes in the closing seconds, but PSG held on to win the game and the three points. Troyes has 13 points and is still in 11th place.


Olympique de Marseille’s opportunity to climb to fourth place on Saturday’s late kickoff was lost when they were held to a 2-2 draw away to Strasbourg.

In a fantastic move, Bamba Dieng gave Marseille the lead when he grabbed a long ball from goalkeeper Pau Lopez. Issa Kabore later extended the advantage by capping off a seamless team play, giving the visitors a 2-0 lead at the break.

Lebo Mothiba cut the deficit in half for Strasbourg in the second half by finding himself undefended in the box and volleying the ball home in the 76th minute.

Strasbourg striker Kevin Gameiro pounced on a shoddy clearance in extra time to lob a spectacular strike into the top corner as Marseille struggled to hold on in pursuit of their first league victory since September.

Strasbourg is in 16th place, one point above the relegation zone, while Marseille is fifth with 24 points.

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