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November 23, 2013
• Stade Auguste-Delaune II, Reims
Referee: B. Bastien
• Attendance: 20666
J. Ménez 60'
Z. Ibrahimovic 90'
FULL-TIME: Reims 0-3 PSG - easy win for Blanc's men, who were rarely challenged. They extend their lead at the top of the table thanks to goals from Moura, Menez and Ibrahimovic.
90' + 2'
Into the second of three additional minutes at the Auguste Delaune. Digne's cross comes off Mandi, and out for a corner.
Goal Zlatan Ibrahimovic
GOAL! Reims 0-3 PSG - AND HE HAS HIS GOAL! Ibrahimovic wraps things up after a comical mistake by Kossi Agassa. After taking the free-kick, he throws the ball waywardly off Tacalfred, and Ibrahimovic blasts it home.
Free-kick to PSG, 28 metres out after Devaux's foul. It takes a neat deflection off the wall - in, fact, a hand - but play goes on.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic does not want to leave the stadium until he has a goal! Unsuccessful once again, as he latches onto Jallet's pass, but unable to lift if over Agassa.
SUBSTITUTION - PSG: Javier Pastore comes on for Thiago Motta.
And still, PSG's defence remains impregnable. De Preville blasts forward under pressure from Thiago Silva, but he mishits his effort, which goes horribly wide.
Edging towards full-time here, and every PSG pass is being met with 'ole's' here and there. This game has been over since half-time, in all honesty.
Late chance for Reims to try and halve the deficit, but they cannot hit it on target. The shot from distance zips past Sirigu's right post. Nine minutes to go.
TRIPLE STOP! PSG had three golden chances to score there! Fantastic pass from Jallet to Ibrahimovic, who turns Fofana, but cannot connect with the ball, before the ball is beaten away by Agassa. Finally, Krychowiak blocks Lucas' follow-up!
Ibrahimovic looking for a goal to seal off a win this evening, as he steps up his efforts on the left. Fires a shot towards goal - but he cannot convert.
PSG heading for yet another game unbeaten - a run which stretches back to this fixture, at this stadium, more than eight and a half months ago. Fantastic stuff.
Fortes slip in on the left and attempts to release fellow substitute Nico de Preville but PSG continue to hold their strong defensive shape and clear their lines.
Quarter of an hour to go here in Reims - and this match has clearly, already been wrapped up. PSG in complete control.
SUBSTITUTION - PSG: Jeremy Menez and Adrien Rabiot replaced by Blaise Matuidi and Ezequiel Lavezzi.
SUBSTITUTION - Reims: Industrious midfielder Mads Albaek comes off for Oniangué for the final stage.
Mads Winther Albæk
Long ball forward for Odair Fortes to chase, but the substitute cannot latch onto the ball here.
Boos continue to rain down on the pitch after that miss from Krychowiak - but PSG are keen to see this out, with a clean sheet in tow. They're readying a few substitutions. Just over 20 to go.
Missed Penalty Grzegorz Krychowiak
KRYCHOWIAK BLASTS OVER THE BAR! Horrendous spot-kick, and last year's hero has turned to a zero after that miss. Nowhere near goal.
PENALTY! No hesitation from the referee as Verratti upends Ayite in the area.
PENALTY TO STADE DE REIMS -
Signorino not enjoying the best of games from the left-back position, as Jallet continues to have him covered. Offered a bit of space, but his first-time cross is well charged down by the former PSG captain.
Yellow Card Alex
SIRIGU! He's at it again - another top save to deny Mads Albaek. Fantastic strike after a free-kick routine failed, a powerful effort from outside the area. But the Italy goalkeeper was equal to it.
DOUBLE SUBSTITUTION - Stade de Reims: Atar and Courtet off for de Preville and Fortes.
N. de Préville
Reims have been broken, and heading for only their third league defeat of the season, and only their second at home. They haven't really offered a great deal to test Sirigu.
Assist Marco Verratti
Goal Jérémy Menez
GOAL: Reims 0-2 PSG - MENEZ! It's 2-0 to the champions, and they've finally broken the hosts' resolve here. Superb, and quick passing moves. Throughout the midfield, into Menez, who tucks it away. Game over.
Turning into somewhat of a drab affair in the second half, with play situated almost exclusively in the middle of the pitch. But PSG break, and with some regularity.
Krychowiak picks up the ball in the middle and is fouled by Motta - but inexplicably, referee Benoit Bastien waves play on!
Menez is unsuccessful, and Digne is caught out of possession. Atar races forward, finding Ayite, and Reims have a good go at the champions here. End-to-end.
Rabiot advances, searching for a through ball, but instead, picks out Jallet on the right. Reims gain possession, through Albaek, who releases Ayite and Signorino on the left. Good pressure going forward, but one pass ends that move.
Yellow Card Franck Signorino
YELLOW CARD - Signorino: The bookings begin to tot up here at the Auguste Delaune. The left-back slides in hard on Lucas Moura, and is cautioned.
As a reminder, PSG can extend their lead at the top, with Lille and Monaco still yet to play. Fellow Champions League hopefuls Marseille beat lowly Ajaccio 3-1 last night.
MENEZ! Should've been 2-0 there. Lovely pass from Motta on the edge of the area, with Ibrahimovic running as a decoy. Menez on the left holds off his marker, but his shot is weak and saved.
PENALTY? No. Fofana goes in with a hard challenge on Ibrahimovic, but Kossi Agassa claims the ball eventually. The defender isn't reprimanded at all.
Yellow Card Thiago Motta
YELLOW CARD - Thiago Motta: The Italy international is booked for hacking down a player. First booking for the Parisiens.
SECOND HALF UNDERWAY IN REIMS! PSG get us going attacking from right to left. Can they maintain their advantage?
The sides are out for the second half, no changes reported.
HT: SDR 0-1 PSG - Lucas Moura's wondrous goal separates the sides in a competitive first half. Reims were dominant early on, but have since failed to even trouble the champions, save for a couple of moments. Laurent Blanc's men are on top.
45' + 1'
HALF-TIME: Stade de Reims 0-1 Paris Saint-Germain.
45' + 1'
Into the first of one minute of additional time.
LUCAS! Nice pass from the left as Rabiot picks out Ibrahimovic, who in turn sees space for Lucas. The Brazilian cannot get past his marker, but still has a pop - but it's a good save.
Yellow Card Mads Winther Albæk
YELLOW CARD - Albaek: Safe to say, that Menez has taken more than a kicking this evening. From the following corner, it is somehow cleared off the line before the Norwegian midfielder upends the French winger.
WOW! WHAT A STOP BY SIRIGU! Fantastic shot, and an even better save from the goalkeeper. Tested from distance by Tacalfred, and it looks to be going in - but somehow, it is tipped over!
Five minutes to go until the break at Stade Auguste-Delaune II and PSG comfortably lead 1-0, slowly taking complete advantage over a fast-deteriorating Reims side.
Poor play-acting from Ayite, who lowers his face down low to try and win a free-kick off of Thiago Motta. PSG unperturbed by his actions, however.
Strong calls from the bench from Hubert Fournier for Reims to hurry up and test Sirigu at the other end. But they've won a free-kick in the middle of the park.
Reims struggling in midfield and being hurried off the ball. And they have been punoshed by Lucas Moura but Ibrahimovic cannot take that any further.
Verratti has played the most passes - 36 - of any player on the pitch, followed closely by Rabiot and Krychowiak (33 each).
Reims have offered little since that setback. Ayite is robbed by Alex, as PSG maintain their defensive shape. Through the middle, Gaetan Courtet has had little service.
Chants of 'Lucas Lucas Lucas' go up in the stadium as the Brazilian winger finds Ibrahimovic in acres of space through the middle. He finds him, but the Swede is just ruled offside.
VERRATTI! He doesn't score very often, and he almost hesitated with the shot there. Nice link-up play with Rabiot, and the Italy international shrugs off his marker to curl an effort towards Agassa. Good save.
Christophe Jallet has been threatening on the right hand side. Great link-up between him and Lucas, and the cross comes in, and headed away by Aissa Mandi - with Ibrahimovic lurking.
Lucas Moura's goal is the first goal in this fixture in Ligue 1 to be scored in the first half. Both of the previous meetings saw the game settled in the second period.
Reims attack furiously at the other end, and win a corner for their efforts. Taken by Ayite, headed away but Sirigu reclaims.
Assist Zlatan Ibrahimovic
GOAL! Reims 0-1 PSG - LUCAS MOURA!! Oh, what a goal. What a goal. He had done little before this. Superb pass from Ibrahimovic to release Lucas, and by then, he leaves his defender for dead and blasts a shot into the top corner.
Oh, it was a stunning individual goal. A wonderful finish - good enough to silence the fervent crowd inside the stadium. Out of nowhere! PSG 1-0 up.
LUCAS! Wide. Decent chance for PSG there, as Rabiot does well to superbly pick out Jallet on the right. Nice inswinging cross but the Brazilian winger's header is well wide.
Tempo has decreased considerably over the last few minutes as both sides consolidate possession on the ball. Space opening up for Verratti, who picks out Rabiot in midfield.
Yellow Card Mickäel Tacalfred
Free-kick delivered in well by PSG, into the danger zone, but Tacalfred and Fofana see it safely back to Kossi Agassa. The Togo international has impressed between the sticks this season.
YELLOW CARD - Tacalfred: And few can argue that it was not deserved. The Reims defender absolutely clatters into the winger, and sends him flying across the turf.
Lucas Digne reprimanded by the referee for a foul on Floyd Ayite, who was tracking back on the wing. Blanc meanwhile, cuts a frustrated figure on the touchline.
Lucas Moura hasn't really been in this encounter so far - and he faces a tough time with Atar, Signorino and Krychowiak keeping a close eye on hime. Meanwhile, Menez makes a run on the left and finds Rabiot before the ball is played back.
Quarter of an hour gone at Stade Auguste Delaune II - and PSG have not really found their rhythm as of yet. The hosts are controlling the midfield expertly.
Good tackle from Mandi to deny Digne progress down the left-flank. Digne nevertheless finds Ibrahimovic, who for once, is easily muscled off the ball. Signorino breaks on the left.
All unwinding at the back for Reims though, as Kossi Agassa sells his side short. Jeremy Menez attempts to strike at goal - blocked by the defender - before Rabiot is muscled off the ball and cleared by Signorino.
PSG venture up the other end as Ibrahimovic goes up against Signorino, but his cross - intended for Rabiot arriving in the middle - is blocked away by the Reims defender.
PSG haven't found an answer to combat Reims' increasing confidence in attack, as Albaek attempts a header goalwards, before it is saved by Sirigu.
No question that Reims have started the game stronger. A delightful long ball from deep, headed on by Courtet - but the finish from Ayite was terribly woeful - and out of play.
Another corner for Reims, though this time, headed away by an alert Alex. Jeremy Menez has gone down under the challenge of Signorino.
AISSA MANDI!! What a header, and good save by Sirigu. First chance of the game, and it was almost 1-0! Good delivery from Ayite, towards the right-back, but the header was at a decent height, and turned around by Sirigu.
Atar makes god progress on the right, but the final touch comes off Jallet as Reims win a corner - the first of the game. To be taken by Ayite.
Reims need to watch out for Thiago Silva's defence splitting through balls, which have worked to great effect this season. Luckily for the hosts, Lucas Digne - on the receiving end - is offside.
Poor free-kick from Thiago Motta, and headed away by Tacalfred at the first attempt. That was PSG's first foray up the other end.
Christophe Jallet gets a few fans going with a fine bit of skill before Lucas Moura - who dispossesses Franck Signorino, is then upended. Free-kick to Paris Saint-Germain.
Good movement from Antoine Devaux and last season's matchwinner Gregorz Krychowiak in the midfield - combining in the middle. Reims have kept PSG at length so far.
Already a few boos and jeers from the Reims fans inside the packed stadium as the ball helplessly flies out of play. It will be interesting to see the impact Jeremy Menez and Lucas Moura have on this game - as opposed to Edinson Cavani.
Today's referee - Benoit Bastien - gets us underway at Stade Auguste Delaune II. It's Reims who get us started attacking from left to right.
It's a cold, late afternoon setting in the Champagne region of France, as Laurent Blanc hands final instructions to Thiago Motta. PSG also have one eye on their Champions League encounter v Olympiakos on Wednesday.
TEAM NEWS: Reims are without Diego, with Nicolas de Preville and Odair Fortes only among the bench. PSG ring the changes, but still include Zlatan Ibrahimovic who returns after World Cup disappointment against a Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired Portugal. Lucas and Jeremy Menez also start, as do youngters Lucas Digne and Adrien Rabiot.
PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN: Sirigu - Jallet, Alex, Thiago Silva, Digne - Rabiot, Motta, Verratti - Lucas, Ibrahimovic, Menez.
STADE DE REIMS: Agassa - Mandi,Tacalfred, Fofana, Signorino - Krychowiak, Devaux, Albaek - Atar, Courtet, Ayité.
CONFIRMED TEAM NEWS
This hasn't been a happy hunting ground for the French champions, who after losing this fixture last season led to then-sporting director Leonardo branding PSG as being built 'only for the Champions League'. Reportedly, it was after this game that Carlo Ancelotti decided to call time on his career in Paris.
The two sides have a matched record against each other. Last season, both won a game apiece, 1-0 at their respective stadiums. In fact, Reims' 1-0 win over PSG in March 2013 remains PSG's last league defeat.
Reims have snuck into the top six after winning two of their last three games. They beat Marseille and prevailed against Monaco before the international break and have only lost twice in the league all season.
PSG return from the international break still on top of the table and with a four point lead ahead of LOSC Lille. Laurent Blanc's men have looked irresistable lately.
Good afteroon and welcome to today's live Ligue 1 encounter between Stade de Reims and Paris Saint-Germain at the Stade Auguste Delaune. I'm Mohammed Ali, and I'll be guiding you through proceedings.
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