Zlatan hat-trick fires PSG
Last Updated: 11/12/12 9:51pm
Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Netted PSG hat-trick
Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a hat-trick as Paris St Germain narrowed the gap on Ligue 1 leaders Lyon to two points with an emphatic 4-0 away win at Valenciennes.
The Swede opened the scoring in the 28th minute and added two more goals early in the second half before Ezequiel Lavezzi rounded off the rout in the 82nd minute against their fifth-placed opponents.
The hosts' form this season had promised a sterner test and they certainly started brightly with Foued Kadir testing PSG goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu with a shot from the edge of the box in the ninth minute.
Sirigu pulled off another fine save to deny Nicolas Isimat-Mirin four minutes later, but the visitors grabbed the lead against the run of play when Lavezzi's initial effort was parried into the path of Ibrahimovic by home keeper Nicolas Penneteau and the Swede made no mistake from close range.
Paris suffered the loss of Brazilian Alex in the first half due to injury but they were not affected as they extended their lead within two minutes of the restart.
Once again Penneteau stopped the initial effort, a crashing volley from Javier Pastore, but Ibrahimovic pounced on the rebound to knock home his 16th Ligue 1 goal of the season.
And it took Ibrahimovic just five more minutes to complete his hat-trick after Jeremy Menez cut in down the left and slid the ball into the path of the Swede who converted his third of the night.
Menez missed a superb chance to score the fourth and Blaise Matuidi hit the base of the left-hand post following a clever Ibrahimovic short-corner.
But PSG finally completed their easy win eight minutes from time when Marco Verratti picked out Lavezzi and he beat Benjamin Angoua before striking a right-foot shot past the helpless Penneteau.
French Ligue 1
|3||Paris St Germain||22||44|
|16||Evian Thonon Gaillar||22||23|