No mercy! Mbappe nets five in PSG's French Cup rout of sixth-tier Pays de Cassel

Mbappe 2022-23Getty
  • Mbappe scored first-half hat-trick
  • Neymar with goal, assist
  • PSG to play Marseille in the last 16

TELL ME MORE: PSG manager Christophe Galtier put out a near full-strength line-up against their lowly opponents, starting both Neymar and Mbappe. And after some early passages of promise from Pays de Cassel, the Parisians began to dominate. Mbappe opened the scoring after 30 minutes, seeing a shot from close range deflected past a wrong-footed keeper. Neymar doubled PSG's advantage two minutes later, evading two sprawling defenders before finishing.

Pays de Cassel's resistance steadily faded from there. Mbappe completed his hat-trick before half-time and added a fourth shortly after the break. PSG would add two more, perhaps being a bit too merciless against a side full of amateur footballers.

THE MVP: It seemed a bit harsh on Pays de Cassel to start Kylian Mbappe against a sixth-tier side. But the France international was as devastating as usual against far inferior opposition. He scored three in a 10-minute period towards the end of the first half, and added two more after the break. This all happened with apparent minimal effort, as PSG's star cut a mostly disinterested figure for most of proceedings. PSG would have won without him in the XI, but Mbappe starred nonetheless.

THE BIG LOSER: This was a game that the Ligue 1 giants were never likely to lose. It was, perhaps, an ideal contest for Galtier to give some of PSG's academy players a full contest. Young talents such as Ilyes Housini and Warren Zaire-Emery watched from the bench for all 90 minutes. Meanwhile, Ismael Gharbi and E.C. Bitshiabu were handed brief cameos. Galtier pointed out over the weekend that he wanted to put out a strong XI and give his big names more time to find a rhythm. But it might just have been better to let the kids play.


Kylian Mbappe Neymar PSG Pays de Cassel Coupe de FranceNeymar Pays de Cassel PSG Coupe de FranceGetty

WHAT NEXT? PSG continue their Ligue 1 campaign, playing Reims on Sunday as they look to extend their lead at the top of Ligue 1. They will face off against Marseille in the French Cup last 16 in early February.