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Rediff.com  » Sports » Soccer PIX: PSG smash Lens; Dortmund draw again

Soccer PIX: PSG smash Lens; Dortmund draw again

August 27, 2023 09:27 IST
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Images from football matches held across Europe on Saturday

Paris St Germain's Kylian Mbappe celebrates scoring their third goal against RC Lens during their Ligue 1 match at Parc des Princes, Paris, France

IMAGE: Paris St Germain's Kylian Mbappe celebrates scoring their third goal against RC Lens during their Ligue 1 match at Parc des Princes, Paris, France. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Paris St Germain's Marco Asensio scored his first goal for the club and Kylian Mbappe added two more to guide the Ligue 1 champions to a comprehensive 3-1 victory over Lens in their clash at Parc des Princes on Saturday.

Asensio fired his side ahead moments before halftime from outside the box following a quick break, opening his account for his new club following a close-season transfer from Real Madrid.

 

PSG were not at their best but never looked troubled as Mbappe doubled the advantage in the second half when he rocketed a 20-metre shot into the back of the net.

The France forward scored again late on for his third goal in two Ligue 1 games, an impressive start to the campaign despite being frozen out of the squad for weeks in pre-season amid an ongoing contract stand-off.

Lens grabbed a consolation goal when Morgan Guilavogui scored with virtually the last kick of the game.

PSG move up to fourth in the table with five points from three games, while Lens, who finished second last season, one point behind PSG, have started the new campaign with only a draw from their opening three games.

Marseille eased to a 2-0 victory at home to Brest, ending the visitors’ 100% start to the Ligue 1 season.

It was a gritty performance and enough for three points as Chancel Mbemba headed in a free-kick inside four minutes.

Home defender Jonathan Clauss cleared off the line from Jeremy Le Douaron after that, before Marseille doubled their advantage midway through the second period.

Ismaila Sarr scored his first goal for the club following his move from Watford, turning in the rebound after Brest goalkeeper Marco Bizot spilled a cross.

Marseille move up to second place, level on seven points with leaders AS Monaco. Brest won their opening two games of the season for the first time in their history and remain third.

Dortmund's Malen to the rescue again in 1-1 draw at Bochum

Borussia Dortmund's Karim Adeyemi looks dejected after the match against  VfL Bochum at Ruhrstadion, Bochum, Germany

IMAGE: Borussia Dortmund's Karim Adeyemi looks dejected after the match against VfL Bochum at Ruhrstadion, Bochum, Germany. Photograph: Thilo Schmuelgen/Reuters

Borussia Dortmund stumbled to a 1-1 draw at VfL Bochum in their mini-Ruhr valley derby on Saturday, with forward Donyell Malen's second-half equaliser rescuing a point for last season's Bundesliga runners-up.

Dortmund, who needed an 88th minute goal by Dutch striker Malen to beat Cologne 1-0 in their league opener last week, were sluggish and toothless in attack for long stretches of the match.

It is not the start coach Edin Terzic, club bosses and fans had been hoping for after Dortmund unexpectedly lost the Bundesliga title following a slip-up on the final matchday.

"It was absolutely not a good game from us," said Dortmund captain Emre Can. "There was a lot missing and that is not how we want to play football. We want to play better, win and dominate.

"We were not surprised (by Bochum's game) but maybe they were hungrier. I cannot explain it either. We know how we want to play but we don't push this through the entire game."

Dortmund did have a couple of early chances but it was the hosts who struck first with Kevin Stoeger's unstoppable drive in the 13th minute taking goalkeeper Gregor Kobel by surprise.

Dortmund have now played a Bundesliga record 129 consecutive games without registering a goalless draw.

Bochum grew bolder and kept taking stabs at the Dortmund goal, with Philipp Hofmann almost adding a second with his glancing header in the 32nd minute bouncing off the bar.

Terzic's team were running out of ideas for how to break through the hard-working Bochum defence when Malen took matters into his own hands once more and threaded a shot past two defenders and into the bottom corner for the equaliser.

They briefly upped the tempo as they went in search of a winner and hit the post with Felix Nmecha's effort just past the hour.

Bochum, who bounced back from last week's 5-0 loss at VfB Stuttgart, responded with Patrick Osterhage's shot onto the post in the 87th, but in the end neither side could find a winner.

Fellow Champions League club Union Berlin made it two wins from two matches with a 4-1 demolition of Darmstadt 98 on the road, having scored eight goals in their two games.

Xabi Alonso's Bayer Leverkusen also have a perfect record following their 3-0 victory at Borussia Moenchengladbach, with new signing Victor Boniface netting twice.

Champions Bayern Munich will look to emulate them when they host Augsburg on Sunday.

Pulisic scores again to help Milan thrash Torino, Roma slump to Verona loss

AC Milan forward Christian Pulisic struck to set Stefano Pioli's side on their way to a 4-1 thrashing of Torino in their opening home game of the season in Serie A on Saturday, while Hellas Verona snatched a 2-1 victory over visitors AS Roma.

Pulisic's opener, two Olivier Giroud penalties and a close-range lob by Theo Hernandez moved Milan provisionally top after they got off to a winning 2-0 start at Bologna on Monday.

"An excellent match, the weekly work made us level up," Pioli told DAZN. "The team has made an important journey in recent years and top-level reinforcements have arrived... A good group is forming in terms of attitude, availability."

US international Pulisic looks set to become a new idol at the San Siro after his move from Chelsea as he put Milan ahead in the 33rd minute by firing home from close range in front of a capacity crowd for his second goal in two games.

Torino defender Perr Schuurs temporarily spoilt the mood when he levelled three minutes later with a first-time effort but that was the visitors' only shot on target all night.

Giroud restored Milan's lead with a penalty minutes before halftime, calmly firing the ball into the roof of the net after the hosts were awarded a penalty for handball.

Hernandez chipped goalkeeper Vanja Milinkovic-Savic to add the third in first-half stoppage time following a couple of one-twos with Rafael Leao before Frenchman Giroud converted another spot kick in the second half after Schuurs' foul on Leao.

Torino, who were held to a 0-0 draw at home by newly-promoted Cagliari on Monday, lacked the ideas to pose any danger in front of Mike Maignan's goal as Milan kept the ball and continued pushing to increase the scoreline.

Jose Mourinho's Roma fell short at Verona who were quick to take the lead when midfielder Ondrej Duda scored from close range in less than four minutes after visiting goalkeeper Rui Patricio saved a fierce long-range shot by Filippo Terracciano.

Roma had a golden chance to equalise shortly after through midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini who controlled the ball on the edge of the box but his low shot went inches wide.

Instead, Verona doubled their lead in first-half stoppage time through forward Cyril Ngonge who left the Milan defence standing as he netted on the counter with a solo run.

Algeria midfielder Houssem Aouar pulled one back for Roma after the break but the visitors were unable to rescue a draw despite Verona finishing with 10 men following an 84th minute red card for Isak Hien for a foul on Andrea Belotti.

Verona, who secured another season in Serie A via a relegation playoff last term, are provisionally second after winning their opening match at Empoli 1-0.

"We conceded an avoidable goal which intimidated us a bit ... (but) these matches create mentality and a strong identity," new Verona manager Marco Baroni told a press conference.

Roma, who were still without Mourinho as he serves a 10-day touchline ban for criticising a referee at the end of last season, have one point after being held to a 2-2 draw by visiting Salernitana last weekend.

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