PSG fights to go six clear in France

Defeats Dijon 2-1.

Thomas Meunier (centre) celebrates after scoring a goal.   -  AFP

A Thomas Meunier brace gave Paris Saint-Germain a hard-fought 2-1 win at Dijon in Ligue 1 on Saturday after the host thought it had earned a late draw through Benjamin Jeannot's stunning volley.

The result gives PSG a six-point lead over second-placed Monaco which lost 3-2 at Lyon on Friday.

In a packed and raucous stadium, Dijon made a real fight of it as a PSG side deprived of Edinson Cavani, Marco Verratti, Thiago Motta, Thiago Silva and Layvin Kurzawa were given a rough time by the host. Angel Di Maria, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe could have scored a hatful and PSG hit the woodwork twice before its go-ahead goal on 70 minutes.

Belgian right-back Meunier held his nerve to slot the opening goal past prone Dijon goalkeeper Baptiste Reynet, who had just parried a shot in what was an excellent performance. His teammate Jeannot's goal will be a contender for goal of the season; running at full tilt he fired a left-footed volley with such force in the 87th minute it left PSG keeper Alphonse Areola rooted to the spot.

‘Small dose of destiny’

The rapture was short-lived, however, as Meunier again calmly slotted home as Mbappe put the ball on a platter for him deep into injury time. "It was a small dose of destiny," Meunier told reporters. Meunier has now scored three league goals in his last two appearances, further strengthening his case for inclusion in Wednesday's Champions League tie at Anderlecht.

"We knew it would be tough but we were not expecting to have to fight like that," France midfielder Adrien Rabiot told French television after the game. "For them it was their game of the season and their mentality and team spirit made us use up a great deal of energy."

Swiss prosecutors revealed this week they are probing PSG chairman Khelaifi, who heads the Qatari-owned beIN Media group, and disgraced former FIFA executive Jerome Valcke over the sale of media rights for World Cups from 2018-2030.

FIFA said on Friday it was also investigating Khelaifi over the media rights issue.

On Friday, Nabil Fekir's last-gasp free-kick delivered three crucial points to Lyon as its captain sealed a home win over champion Monaco, which rested Colombian striker Radamel Falcao ahead of its midweek hosting of Besiktas.

Result: Dijon 1 (Jeannot 87) lost to Paris Saint-Germain 2 (Meunier 70, 92).

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