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French Ligue 1

Parc des Princes 29th March 2013 - Kick off 19:30 Ref: W Bien

PSG Paris St Germain vs Montpellier Montpellier

PSG 1

K Gameiro (80)

ft

PSG edge towards title glory

Last Updated: 29/03/13 10:46pm

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PSG celebrate their late winner

PSG celebrate their late winner

Barcelona will be the next visitors to the Parc des Princes but Paris St Germain put thoughts of Lionel Messi and company to one side to take a step closer to the Ligue 1 title.

Montpellier, last season's surprise French champions, made PSG work hard for their reward, the only goal coming when Kevin Gameiro prodded home from close range in the 80th minute.

This season could end in glory on more than one front for the Parisians, with domestic honours increasingly probable but Champions League success also in their sights.

Barcelona will pose more of a test than Montpellier, but at least PSG have almost 24 hours longer than the Catalans to prepare for their tussle next Tuesday with the Primera Division league leaders.

The hosts' priority was to secure a no-fuss win and take an eight-point lead in Ligue 1.

They threatened to edge in front after just a minute when Javier Pastore released Clement Chantome on the edge of the Montpellier penalty area. He had an angle to contend with, though, and shot wide.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who would later play a key role in the winner, was next to threaten the visitors' goal as Marco Verratti's pass over the top found the Swede, who volleyed narrowly over the crossbar.

Montpellier showed an attacking threat when Remy Cabella crossed toward Gaetan Charbonnier, who from 20 yards fizzed a right-footed shot inches wide.

Thiago Silva forced Geoffrey Jourdren into a save at full stretch when he got his head to a free-kick from Jeremy Menez and PSG menaced the Montpellier goal again before the interval when Menez played in Ibrahimovic, whose curled right-footed strike was blocked by the visiting keeper.

Ibrahimovic created the first chance of the second half, heading the ball to Menez, whose thumping 20-yard volley narrowly missed.

Jourdren denied Chantome before Montpellier proved their pedigree by almost silencing the expectant home crowd.

Again it was Charbonnier with the chance, Younes Belhanda playing him through on goal. But the finish was not punishing, with goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu able to make the block.

With 10 minutes remaining and David Beckham newly called off the bench for a late push, PSG went ahead.

Menez bustled through midfield and played a smart ball to Ibrahimovic, whose run took him into the left side of the penalty area. Montpellier defenders hurried back but could not intercept the striker's left-footed pass that found Gameiro racing in to turn home from six yards.

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Matches

Table

French Ligue 1

French Ligue 1
Pos Team P Pts
1 Lyon 26 54
2 Paris St Germain 26 52
3 Marseille 26 50
4 Monaco 25 43
5 St Etienne 26 42
6 Bordeaux 26 41
7 Montpellier 25 39
8 Guingamp 26 35
9 Nice 26 34
10 Bastia 26 33
11 Nantes 26 33
12 Lille 26 32
13 Rennes 26 32
14 Caen 26 31
15 Reims 26 31
16 Lorient 25 28
17 Toulouse 26 28
18 Evian Thonon Gaillar 25 26
19 RC Lens 26 22
20 Metz 26 22