Zlatan Ibrahimovic brace helps Paris Saint-Germain rout Toulouse
PARIS (AP) — Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored two more as Paris Saint-Germain resumed its domestic dominance, crushing Toulouse 5-0 to move 11 points clear of Caen at the top of the French league on Saturday.
PSG squandered a host of chances in a 1-0 defeat at Real Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday — its first defeat this season — but took only six minutes to find the net as winger Angel Di Maria scored in a second successive league game.
"I hope we continue playing like this," PSG captain Thiago Silva said. "If we do, we'll have the chance to rest players after Christmas in order to concentrate on the Champions League."
PSG has not lost in the French league since March 15 — a run of 22 league matches.
"We can do something exceptional and finish champions without losing a match," PSG winger Lucas said.
Ibrahimovic has nine goals in his last eight French league games. PSG's all-time leading scorer made it 2-0 after 18 minutes.
Lucas scored midway through the second half, Ibrahimovic got his second of the match in the 75th, and substitute Ezequiel Lavezzi finished off the rout.
At Parc des Princes, Di Maria scored with a long-range shot that bounced just in front of goalkeeper Ali Ahamada, before Ibrahimovic and Lucas padded out the lead with headers.
Lucas was involved in the fourth goal, dribbling through the defense and forcing a save from Ahamada, with Ibrahimovic reacting first to tap home his 115th goal in 140 games since joining PSG from AC Milan in the 2012-13 season.
Lavezzi gave the goal-hungry fans more to cheer when he capped off the rout with his first league goal since Aug. 30.
With Lyon not hosting bitter local rival Saint-Etienne until Sunday, Caen moved provisionally into second spot after beating Guingamp 2-1 at home thanks to goals from veteran midfielder Julien Feret and striker Andy Delort.
Caen has two more points than Lyon, Saint-Etienne and Angers through 13 rounds.
Lorient moved up to sixth place after beating last-place Troyes 4-1 with striker Benjamin Moukandjo scoring twice to join Ibrahimovic at the top of the scoring charts — one ahead of Marseille striker Michy Batshuayi.
Elsewhere, 38-year-old Brazilian defender Vitorino Hilton scored a last-minute winner as Montpellier beat Nantes 2-1 to move out of the relegation zone.
Also, it was: Lille 1, Bastia 1 and Reims 1, Ajaccio 2.
In Sunday's other games, Marseille hosts Nice, and Bordeaux faces Monaco.