Neymar scored his first PSG hat-trick as Unai Emery’s men thrashed Dijon 8-0 to move 11 points clear at the top of Ligue 1. Edinson Cavani became the joint-top goalscorer in Paris Saint-Germain’s history and Neymar recorded his first hat-trick for the club as the Ligue 1 leaders hammered Dijon 8-0 on Wednesday. Cavani scored PSG’s third goal with a simple header that drew him level with Zlatan Ibrahimovic on 156 goals for the Paris club, who moved 11 points clear at the top of Ligue 1, although the Uruguayan was denied the chance to break the record when Neymar scored a late penalty even though he had already completed his treble. PSG’s 11th win out of 11 home Ligue 1 games this season saw Neymar at his mesmeric best, although Unai Emery’s side rarely needed to get out of third gear against desperately poor opposition, despite Kylian Mbappe having been left on the bench. The in-form Angel Di Maria scored twice in the first 15 minutes, the first a superb strike from the edge of the box and the second from virtually on the line after Neymar’s chip threatened to miss. After Cavani’s historic goal, Neymar got in on the act, bending home a glorious 20-yard free-kick to make the score 4-0 before half-time, the Brazilian then knocking in a rebound for an easy fifth after the break. Neymar saved the best for last with his hat-trick goal, a dazzling solo effort, then substitute Mbappe wrapped up an eighth straight win for PSG before Neymar scored his fourth of the game from 12 yards despite his strike partner – and the Parc des Princes fans – calling for Cavani to take it. PSG visit their nearest challengers Lyon on Sunday, when victory would virtually wrap up the league title with four months of the season still to play. Jordan Marie sent an ambitious chip wide in the first minute as PSG made a sloppy start from kick-off, but the league leaders were soon in full flow. Di Maria hit the winner against Nantes last time out and he was on target again, picking out the top-right corner with a sensational left-footed 20-yard strike that he whipped across Baptiste Reynet. The Argentine added his fifth Ligue 1 goal of the season after 15 minutes, prodding in from a yard out with Neymar’s deft chip over Reynet seemingly drifting narrowly wide, Giovani Lo Celso having won back possession deep in Dijon territory.
And, with Dijon unable to cope with the hosts’ attacking fluency, Cavani then headed in his 156th goal for the club to draw level with Ibrahimovic as PSG’s top goalscorer in all competitions, Di Maria providing the perfect cross from the right.
Alphonse Areola made a straight-forward save to his left to deny Mehdi Abeid before Neymar extended PSG’s advantage in style despite seemingly being troubled by a groin problem. The Brazilian won the free-kick himself and gave Reynet no chance with a 20-yard shot that curled over the wall and into the unguarded portion of the Dijon goal. Dijon initially showed more fight after the interval, Kwon Chang-Hoon bending a shot wide of the post, before Reynet made his first save, sticking out his right boot to block Neymar’s shot. Neymar passed in his second of the night after 57 minutes, though, with defender Cedric Yambere only able to block a cross directly to the world’s most expensive player. With Dijon helpless Neymar was not finished yet, wrapping up the hat-trick with a tremendous solo effort before teeing up substitute Mbappe on the overlap on the left for PSG’s seventh. And the scoring was finally over when Neymar – who earlier this season rowed with Cavani on the pitch about set-piece duties – insisted upon taking a penalty won by the Uruguayan, despite the crowd chanting for El Matador to take it to surpass Ibrahimovic’s record, to cap a superb individual display.
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