PSG had to dig deep to overcome a spirited Lorient performance and extend their lead at the top of Ligue 1.
Lorient gave PSG the perfect start to the game after less than 10 minutes when goalkeeper Yvon Mvogo fumbled on the ball and allowed Neymar to close out his potential spot-kick.
Hugo Ekitike rolled the ball back to Neymar and the Brazilian calmly rounded Mvogo to open the scoring.
That would be Mvogo’s only contribution to the afternoon’s proceedings as he picked up a knock and had to be replaced by former Arsenal stopper Vito Mannone.
The rest of the first half was a tepid affair with PSG in control and Lorient happy to have kept the league leaders at bay.
The game continued at a similar pace after the break and it was starting to look like a game that would quickly be relegated to the dustbin of history. However, it seems that Lorient did not read the script.
The home side had to bide their time but pounced when they did, as Terem Moffi made a smart move to beat Gianluigi Donnarumma at his near post to equalise.
The equalizer seemed to give Lorient confidence and chaos in the PSG defence, and Moffi could have had a second goal moments later when he found space in the penalty area only to hit the crossbar.
It was Lorient with the pace as the second half wore on, with the home side beginning to grow in confidence and hold the ball for longer periods.
PSG, meanwhile, looked to have lost the confidence and cohesion they have shown for much of this season, perhaps lacking the influence of the injured Lionel Messi.
The champions’ off day was encapsulated by an indifferent performance from Kylian Mbappe, who seemed to do nothing today and missed several good opportunities.
But despite Lorient’s best efforts, they just couldn’t keep the star-studded visitors at bay for good and were punished when Danilo Pereira headed home from Neymar’s corner.
PSG simply had too much in their locker for the hosts to deal with and took the three points to extend their lead over Lens at the top of the table.
PSG player ratings vs. Lorient
1. PSG (3-4-1-2)
GK: Gianluigi Donnarumma – 5/10 – Hardly tested all game, but let Moffi’s effort fly past him at the near post. Not his best day.
RCB: Sergio Ramos – 7/10 – Solid defensively, but missed a couple of good chances that could have made the difference.
CB: Marquinhos – 6/10 – Looked a little uncomfortable at times today. Perhaps PSG weren’t expecting to face such spirited opposition?
LCB: Danilo Pereira – 8/10 – Stood firm as Lorient grew into the game in the second half and popped up with a late winner.
RWB: Achraf Hakimi – 6/10 – Not a bad showing per se, but you’d expect a player of Hakimi’s standard to stretch the Lorient defence more.
LWB: Nuno Mendes – 6/10 – Not quite on the same level as his midweek heroics in the Champions League.
CM: Vitinha – 7/10 – A composed presence in midfield as PSG dominated possession.
CM: Marco Verratti – 6/10 – Would have been good to see the more experienced midfielder do more to drive his side forward.
CAM: Neymar – 9/10 – PSG weren’t at their best today, but Neymar stood head and shoulders above his teammates. Made things happen every time he got on the ball.
ST: Hugo Ekitike – 7/10 – Showed great composure and selflessness to tee up Neymar for the opener.
ST: Kylian Mbappe – 5/10 – It just wasn’t Mbappe’s day, and nothing captured this better than when he ran onto Neymar’s through ball only to get the ball trapped under his feet. On another day, he’d have fancied himself to score a hatful.
SUB: Renato Sanches – 6/10 – Slotted in fine in Vitinha’s position.
SUB: Carlos Soler – 6/10 – Kept PSG driving forwards as they pushed for the winner.
SUB: Juan Bernat – 6/10 – Didn’t really produce much of note.
SUB: Pablo Sarabia – N/A
SUB: Nordi Mukiele – N/A