PSG pace too much for Lyon
A fine goal from record signing Javier Pastore set Paris Saint-Germain on their way to a 2-0 victory over Lyon on Sunday, sending them three points clear at the top of the Ligue 1 standings.
Pastore broke the deadlock midway through the second half, with Christophe Jallet scoring in the last minute as PSG proved that their massive summer investment paid off. Lyon, meanwhile, now find themselves in third place, three points behind PSG and level on points with Montpellier and Toulouse.
Despite Lyon's ease on the ball, PSG's pace on the counter-attack gave them an edge and they procured the clearest scoring opportunities in the first half.
Hugo Lloris had to push away a shot from Jeremy Menez in the fifth minute and only an alert piece of defending from Maxime Gonalons prevented Pastore from pulling the trigger shortly afterwards. PSG twice went close around the 20-minute mark, with Pastore seeing a toe-poke deflected onto the post by Kim Kallstrom and Menez then obliging Lloris to save with his legs.
There were howls of derision from the home fans in the 29th minute, when Pastore tumbled under a Jimmy Briand challenge just inside the penalty area, but a free-kick was awarded at the edge of the box.
Lyon's best chance saw Alexandre Lacazette direct a header narrowly off target, but they threatened early in the second period when Bafetimbi Gomis headed across goal and wide from Michel Bastos' deep cross.
With the intensity of the game flagging, Pastore produced a moment of class that broke the deadlock in the 64th minute. Picked out by Mathieu Bodmer on the left, he drove past Bakary Kone and then beat Lloris at his near post with a left-footed drive that threatened to take the roof off the famous old stadium.
Lloris intervened smartly when Pastore released Kevin Gameiro moments later, before Gomis squandered a huge chance to equalise when he headed wide from six yards after Bastos' cross found him unmarked with the goal gaping.
There were further chances for the hosts, but PSG's supporters had to wait until the 90th minute for substitute Jallet to meet Nene's free-kick with an emphatic volley and secure a cherished victory.
Lille beat Brest
Earlier, defending champions Lille broke a run of five straight draws with a 2-0 victory over Rennes, but Marseille's domestic woes continued in a 1-1 draw at home to Brest.
Lille were held 1-1 at Trabzonspor in the UEFA Champions League in midweek, but they comfortably overcame Rennes through goals from Moussa Sow and Florent Balmont to climb to fifth in the table.
Despite a fine 3-0 defeat of Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Wednesday, Marseille have just one win to their name in nine Ligue 1 matches and sit 13th after their stalemate with Brest.
Romain Poyet gave the visitors the lead in the fifth minute with a tame shot that Steve Mandanda somehow allowed to creep underneath him, with Andre Ayew tapping home a 19th-minute equaliser from Loic Remy's low cross.