• PSG hammer Guingamp in Ligue 1• Real Madrid battle to victory over SevillaThe runaway Ligue 1 leaders, Paris Saint-Germain, avenged their League Cup loss to Guingamp by demolishing the Brittany side 9-0.PSG prevailed following hat-tricks from Edinson Ca

European roundup: PSG win 9-0, new low for Henry and Dortmund march on

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  • 2019-01-29 02:30:13 10 months ago
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The runaway Ligue 1 leaders, Paris Saint-Germain, avenged their League Cup loss to Guingamp by demolishing the Brittany side 9-0.

PSG prevailed following hat-tricks from Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappé, a Neymar double and one from Thomas Meunier. PSG’s only downside was the loss of the influential Marco Verratti to an ankle injury after 13 minutes.

Nine days after being knocked out of the League Cup quarter-finals by Guingamp at the Parc des Princes PSG were keen to exact revenge. Neymar opened the scoring in the 12th minute after collecting a superb through-ball by Dani Alves and beating Marc-Aurèle Caillard.

Mbappé made it 2-0 eight minutes before the break following a one-two with Neymar. The France striker then doubled his tally on the stroke of half-time after Cavani dispossessed Félix Eboa Eboa.

The Uruguay striker made it 4-0 in the 59th minute when he tapped in Juan Bernat’s pass and added another eight minutes later following Ángel Di María’s cross. Two minutes after that Neymar, set up by Mbappé, found the net again.

Guingamp’s ordeal was far from over, though. Cavani beat Caillard from Layvin Kurzawa’s cross in the 76th, five minutes before Mbappé also secured a hat-trick after collecting Cavani’s through-ball. The defender Meunier rounded off the humiliation with a shot from inside the box. Mbappé, Neymar and Cavani have now scored a total of 44 goals in Ligue 1, with Mbappé leading the scoring charts with 17.

Thierry Henry’s Monaco fell to a disastrous 5-1 home defeat against Strasbourg. The hosts, who have not won at home this season, were looking to build on the draw they managed against Patrick Vieira’s Nice in midweek but had defender Naldo sent off after seven minutes.

Ludovic Ajorque and Adrien Thomasson put the visitors two up after 17 minutes. Radamel Falcao pulled one back on 22 but Ibrahima Sissoko (63 minutes) and Ajorque with his second (68) sealed it.

Strasbourg were reduced to 10 men a minute later with the dismissal of Stefan Mitrovic but still Youssouf Fofana still added a fifth in added time. Monaco are second-bottom of Ligue 1.

Luka Modric celebrates sealing Real Madrid’s La Liga victory over Sevilla.

Real Madrid breathed new life into their stuttering season as they secured a 2-0 La Liga victory at home to Sevilla. Having wasted any number of chances, they were on course to drop further points and leave their manager, Santiago Solari, under increasing pressure, until Casemiro brilliantly curled in from long range in the 78th minute and then Luka Modric added a late second.

While they are still truly to join the title race led by Barcelona, the three points maintained the pressure on Atlético Madrid, who later won 3-0 at Huesca. Real’s victory moved them ahead of Sevilla, who fell to fourth.

With Sevilla content to attack on the counter from the outset, the hosts dominated possession but struggled to create chances.

The second half began in similar fashion, but Modric began to exert greater influence and, as he sent a dipping effort into the side netting on the hour mark, the opening goal felt imminent.

Dani Ceballos struck the crossbar from 30 yards before Casemiro gave Real Madrid the lead. Modric then sealed victory in stoppage time. Finding himself in space in the penalty area, the Croatian drew the goalkeeper before curling the ball past inside the near post.

Leipzig’s goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi can only watch Axel Witsel’s winner for Borussia Dortmund go past him.

The Bundesliga leaders, Borussia Dortmund narrowly, beat RB Leipzig 1-0 thanks to Axel Witsel’s 19th-minute winner to protect their six-point lead over the champions Bayern Munich as the German top flight resumed following the winter break.

Though missing their in-form captain Marco Reus, who suffered a ligament injury in training on Friday, Dortmund managed to earn their eighth win in their last nine league matches, helped by Roman Bürki’s string of fine saves.

It was also Leipzig’s first home loss of the season and Dortmund’s first league win there since their opponents were promoted to the Bundesliga a few seasons ago.

“We are extremely satisfied. It was as expected a very hard game. Leipzig came very close two or three times but we won in the end,” said Dortmund’s coach, Lucien Favre. “We played really well as a team. The first game of the year is always difficult, so it was important to win here today. Roman Bürki was outstanding.”

Roma survived a second-half fightback to end Torino’s unbeaten Serie A away record with a 3-2 win thanks to Stephan El Shaarawy’s late goal at the Stadio Olimpico. A Nicolò Zaniolo strike and an Aleksander Kolarov penalty gave the hosts a comfortable half-time lead but Torino drew level through strikes by Tomás Rincón and Cristian Ansaldi before El Shaarawy secured the points for Roma in the 73rd minute.

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European roundup: PSG win 9-0, new low for Henry and Dortmund march on

Strasbourg were in the fifth tier in 2012. Now they are fifth in Ligue 1

Savoir-faire does not translate directly from French. The closest English equivalent would be “know-how” but the French phrase carries a sense of graceful adaptability, an ability to respond seamlessly and appropriately to any situation. Few teams in football embody savoir-faire more than Strasbourg under Thierry Laurey. Having fought back from liquidation and relegation to the sprawling fifth tier in 2011, the Alsace club are edging towards Europe and perhaps even silverware thanks to their versatile and intelligent coach. Their 5-1 win at Monaco on Saturday, which takes them up to fifth in Ligue 1, is simply their latest eye-catching achievement.

The thought of playing in Europe would have been a dumbfounding dream for Strasbourg supporters throughout the last decade. After being relegated in 2008, the club plunged down the divisions amid spiralling debts. Former player Marc Keller stepped in and took over the club, but they resumed business as fifth-tier amateurs in 2011.

Two straight titles took them back to the third tier, where they boasted record crowds – one gate in the fourth tier even exceeded 20,000. However, a 16th-placed finish in the third tier in 2013-14 seemingly meant relegation back to French football’s wilderness. But their luck started to change. Financial irregularities at other clubs gave Strasbourg a reprieve and, after winning two more titles in the next three seasons, they were back in Ligue 1. Astonishingly, they won the Ligue 2 title in 2016-17 as a newly promoted club.

Laurey joined Strasbourg at the start of that remarkable promotion campaign. Prior to guiding minnows Gazélec Ajaccio into Ligue 1 for the first time in their history in 2015, success had long been illusive for the manager. He even spent 21 months unemployed after leaving Amiens in 2009. Despite the hard times, he never considered changing careers. “I remember telling my wife: ‘This is what I want to do and I’ll continue.’ It’s hard, the phone doesn’t ring, relationships at home are tense and then one day it starts again.”

Strasbourg head coach Thierry Laurey joined the club in 2016.

Last season, Strasbourg’s first campaign back in Ligue 1 for nearly a decade, was dramatic. Their 2-1 win over PSG at the typically boisterous Stade de la Meinau was the highlight – along with the 3-2 victory over Lyon on the penultimate weekend of the campaign that secured their league status after a worrying 11-game run without a win.

Laurey has built Strasbourg’s success on vigilance, adaptability and pragmatism. His players are well drilled and organised, yet fluid and capable of achieving results by varying means. He was unapologetic after a stoic, bus-parking goalless draw away at the freewheeling Lille in November. “When I play someone who is superior to me, I try to be smart. We knew that if we left spaces we would be in danger. We are Strasbourg, the day we call ourselves Chelsea or AC Milan we’ll play differently.”

He adopted a similar tone after wrestling another point from PSG in December. “We knew we were going to defend. It’s not a sign of weakness. I am very happy to take a point.” Laurey exudes an honest and intense persona, like his club, “I wanted to be at a club with lots of enthusiasm, fervour and passion,” he explained before he extended his contract in December. “And my wish is more than fulfilled.”

Laurey often reminds his players not to get carried away. “The goal remains the same,” he said after a 2-1 win at Toulouse in January. “To stay up by doing better than last season. We would like the bottom three to be even further away. We’re managing matches better, we have a more mature team. We have the second best attack in Ligue 1, this is satisfying.”

He even remained cautious after the 5-1 mauling of Monaco – Strasbourg’s sixth win in a row in all competitions. “We lost the ball easily,” he said. “There are ways to improve the team’s performance. I was not happy at half-time because we let Monaco back in the game.” Victories over better resourced sides have become something of a specialty for Laurey, so much so that Strasbourg’s only two defeats since late September have come against promoted teams Nîmes and Reims.

Their win over Lyon in the Coupe de la Ligue quarter-final earlier this month may prove especially momentous. After PSG’s defeat to Guingamp, Strasbourg are the highest ranked team left in the competition and perhaps even favourites to win their first major trophy in 15 years and the accompanying place in European – assuming qualification does not come via the league. They are the second highest scorers in the league behind PSG so a Champions League spot is not fanciful.

Wherever their season takes them, Strasbourg will not get carried away. “Whoever gets drunk will quickly sober up,” Laurey said of his players’ joy at beating PSG last season. His constant drive for improvement and mastery of savoir-faire will see to that.

Ligue 1 talking points

Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappé take a ball each after they both scored hat-tricks in PSG’s 9-0 win over Guingamp.

What now for PSG? Yes, a 9-0 win over Guingamp is a nice rebuttal to the leaders’ elimination from the Coupe de la Ligue last week, but an ankle injury suffered by Marco Verratti took much if not all of the joy from the result. The Italian’s status is still to be determined; his absence could be as brief as two weeks, but Thomas Tuchel has also ominously hinted at a more lengthy time away. Given that PSG are already saddled with the uncomfortable situation of Adrien Rabiot, and the sometime reinvention of Marquinhos and Julian Draxler as central midfielders, the club’s summer transfer policy continues to undermine their potential progress. Idrissa Gueye and Leandro Paredes have both been linked but there is no doubt that should either of the pair arrive this month, PSG will undoubtedly be paying over the odds, again perhaps limiting their future options.

If it is not Memphis, it is Memphis. His chameleonic nature was once again on show this weekend as Lyon won at Saint-Étienne. After an indifferent first half, in which he flubbed a presentable chance early on, he moved from centre-forward to the left wing after Moussa Dembélé was brought on from the bench and he started to impress, combining well with Ferland Mendy, giving Lyon genuine width and putting Loïc Perrin under serious pressure. Lyon have looked decent at times with Depay as a centre-forward, but an attacking side with Depay, Nabil Fékir and the former Celtic forward would give any opponent serious concerns, and allow Lyon to balance potential fixture congestion while still maintaining their place in the top three. More food for thought for Bruno Génésio. It was surely to the manager’s great relief to see a committed performance in the Rhône-Alpes derby.

Quick guide

Ligue 1 results

Ligue 1 results

PSG 9-0 Guingamp
Lille 2-1 Amiens
Saint-Étienne 1-2 Lyon
Monaco 1-5 Strasbourg
Rennes 0-0 Montpellier
Caen 0-1 Marseille
Reims 1-1 Nice
Bordeaux 1-0 Dijon
Nîmes 0-1 Toulouse
Angers 1-0 Nantes

Ligue 1 table

Pos Team P GD Pts
1 PSG 19 52 53
2 Lille 21 13 40
3 Lyon 21 10 37
4 St Etienne 21 7 36
5 Strasbourg 21 12 32
6 Montpellier 20 10 32
7 Marseille 20 4 31
8 Nice 21 -3 31
9 Rennes 21 2 30
10 Bordeaux 20 1 28
11 Reims 21 -3 28
12 Nimes 20 -2 26
13 Toulouse 21 -10 25
14 Nantes 21 -2 23
15 Angers 20 -2 23
16 Caen 21 -9 18
17 Amiens 21 -18 18
18 Dijon 20 -16 17
19 Monaco 21 -17 15
20 Guingamp 21 -29 14

The goalscoring streaks of the season: Rashford, Messi and ... Quagliarella

When Marcus Rashford curled in Manchester United’s winner against Brighton at the weekend, he stretched his scoring streak to four league games in a row. Prior to this run of goals, Rashford had only ever scored in two straight league games but now he has a chance to do something Harry Kane has never managed: score in five consecutive league games. Eleven players have done just that in Europe’s big leagues this season – with one even scoring in 10 straight games.

Andy Delort, Montpellier: five games, five goals

Andy Delort’s career has been cursed by inconsistency. The Frenchman spent six months on the books at Wigan Athletic in 2015 and failed to score a single goal in the Championship. He endured a similarly tough start to his career at Montpellier after moving there last summer, going six league games without a goal. But, once he found his feet, he went on a great run, scoring in each of his next five games. True to form, he is now six games without a goal.

Borja Iglesias, Espanyol: five games, six goals

Borja Iglesias, who turned 26 last week, hadn’t started a single top-flight game before this season, but his return of 22 goals for Real Zaragoza in the Segunda División last season was enough to convince Espanyol to take a chance on the striker. Their faith has been repaid with nine league goals this season and the Spaniard has been linked with a move to Everton this month as a result – not least due to a streak of six goals in five games between October and November.

Sébastien Haller, Eintracht Frankfurt: five games, six goals

Sébastien Haller scored his tenth league goal of the season at the weekend and will be hoping to kickstart another run of form like the one he enjoyed at the end of the year, when he scored six goals – and set up three more – in a five-game stretch for Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga.

Anthony Martial: Manchester United: five games, six goals

Anthony Martial is the only player to have scored in five consecutive Premier League games this season – although Marcus Rashford has the opportunity to join him when Manchester United host Burnley next Tuesday night. Martial’s run included a brace against Chelsea and goal at Manchester City, though he has failed to find the net in United’s last four league games – thankfully for the club, Rashford has taken up the baton.

Wahbi Khazri, Saint-Etienne: five games, six goals

His time at Sunderland was bitterly disappointing but since returning to France – first on loan with Rennes and now at Saint-Etienne – Wahbi Khazri has been revitalised. His run of scoring in five consecutive matches – including a matchwinning brace against Marseille – came to an end at the weekend, but the 27-year-old has been fantastic all season. Only four players – Neymar, Edinson Cavani, Kylian Mbappé and Nicolas Pépé – have scored more than his total of 12 goals in Ligue 1 this season.

Antoine Griezmann, Atlético Madrid: five games, six goals

Antoine Griezmann looked as if he was suffering from a post-World Cup hangover at the start of the season. He only scored three league goals in 14 appearances before December. However, fast forward six weeks and six matches and he has scored six more. Although, like Khazri, his streak came to an end at the weekend.

Mauro Icardi, Inter: five games, seven goals

Mauro Icardi is another player whose form has been up and down this season. He did not score in his first four league games and has not scored in his last four but, between those mini droughts, Icardi hit nine goals in as many matches. The highlight of his season so far has to be his 91st-minute winner against Milan in the derby.

Lionel Messi, Barcelona: six games, nine goals

Lionel Messi has been in phenomenal form this season so it is no surprise that he makes the cut. The one shock is that he isn’t top of the list. The 31-year-old came off the bench at the weekend to score against Leganés, his 25th goal of the season and his 18th in the league. Messi has scored nine goals in his last six league games for Barcelona and you have to go all the way back to mid-September to find the last time he started a game without either providing a goal or an assist.

Krzysztof Piatek, Genoa: seven games, nine goals

Summer signing Krzysztof Piatek had a remarkable start to life in Italy. He scored all four goals on his debut as Genoa beat Lecce 4-0 in the Coppa Italia and then found the net in his first seven league appearances of the season. The striker scored nine times in that run before opening his international account for Poland against Portugal. After just five months at Genoa, he has already earned a €35m move to Milan.

Duván Zapata, Atalanta: seven games, 13 goals

Rewind to the start of November and the notion that Duván Zapata would be among Europe’s most sought-after strikers would be farcical. The Colombian failed to score in his first 10 league appearances on loan at Atalanta, so the fact he has 14 goals at this stage of the season is unbelievable. Thirteen of those goals have come in his last seven appearances in Serie A, including a hat-trick against former club Udinese, a brace against Juventus and a four-goal haul at Frosinone at the weekend.

Fabio Quagliarella, Sampdoria: 10 games, 12 goals

Fabio Quagliarella enjoyed the most prolific campaign of his career last season, scoring 19 goals in Serie A. His form is even hotter this season. Quagliarella has aged like a fine wine since moving to Sampdoria in 2016. The veteran striker turns 36 at the end of the month but his brace against Fiorentina last weekend took his goalscoring streak in the league to a sensational 10 matches. His run began at San Siro against AC Milan way back in October and Samp’s upcoming clash with Udinese gives him a chance to make history. The longest scoring streak in Serie A was set by Gabriel Batistuta back in the 1994-95 season; Quagliarella will match that record of scoring in 11 straight games if he finds the net on Saturday.

Premier League team of the week

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La Liga team of the week

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Serie A team of the week

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Bundesliga team of the week

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Ligue 1 team of the week

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