Wednesday 11 December 2019

Neymar hits four for PSG

Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar celebrates scoring his team's fifth goal. Photo: Getty Images
Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar celebrates scoring his team's fifth goal. Photo: Getty Images

Jamie Holland

Neymar netted four goals and Edinson Cavani became Paris Saint-Germain's joint all-time top scorer as the runaway Ligue 1 leaders demolished visitors Dijon 8-0 last night.

Neymar, just back from injury, took his season's tally to 15 goals and the rout was completed by Angel Di Maria's double and goals by Cavani and substitute Kylian Mbappe.

Cavani bagged his 156th goal in all competitions for PSG, matching the club record of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who played for the club from 2012-'16.

PSG have 56 points and lead second-placed Olympique Lyonnais, who won 2-0 at En Avan Guingamp earlier, by 11 points.

In Spain, Lionel Messi had a penalty saved as triple King's Cup holders Barcelona suffered a surprise 1-0 loss at city rivals Espanyol in a quarter-final first leg, ending an unbeaten run of 29 games in all competitions.

Espanyol's academy graduate Oscar Melendo crashed in the only goal of the game in the 88th minute after Messi had his spot-kick turned away by former Real Madrid goalkeeper Diego Lopez earlier in the second half.

Barca had not lost to Espanyol since 2009 and had not been beaten by the local rivals in the Cup since 1970.

Meanwhile, Mino Raiola is the latest agent to enter the race to represent Dele Alli, and sources close to the Dutchman are confident they can complete the deal.

The Tottenham star is coming to an end of his representation contract with British agent Rob Segal, and will not renew, with that development having sparked a flurry of interest from some of European football's biggest agencies for a young player viewed as potentially one of the most marketable in the world.

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