PARIS ( Associated Press) — Neymar picked up and scored a penalty as Paris Saint-Germain drew 1-1 at home with Monaco on Sunday to stay top of the French league.
Neymar hit Lionel Messi’s pass from the left edge and cut from inside against Chilean central defender Guillermo Maripan, who appeared to be holding him with his leg outstretched.
The referee at first rejected PSG’s request for a penalty, but accepted it after reviewing the video. Neymar confused goalkeeper Alexandre Nubel before sending the ball deep into the net. This is Neymar’s sixth league goal and he has scored eight goals in five matches overall.
PSG have 10 points and lead on goal difference over arch-rivals Marseille and Lens.
Monaco tempted fate at times, but stunned PSG from the start and refused to place the famous attacking trio of Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, only to advance after 20 minutes.
The Paris strikers had scored 17 goals in the last three French league games under new coach Christophe Gaultier, but this time they did not get a shot on goal until Mbappe’s weak shot in the 37th minute.
“They didn’t close the gap well,” admitted PSG captain Marquinhos.
With a brace from Alexis Sánchez, Olympique de Marseille defeated southern rival Nice 3–0 in the opening game.
For now, coach Igor Tudor’s Marseille is still in good shape after four matches.
Nice was reinforced by three players full of Premier League experience: goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Ivorian striker Nicolas Pepe. But he is still looking for his first win and is in 18th place.
Instead, Marseille took off early under the leadership of Tudor, a coach with a reputation for strictness. His appointment was not well received by fans, especially after he dismissed creative midfielder Dmitry Pete in the first three dates.
But Tudor has quelled the resistance with his team’s high-pressure style. He also said he would give 35-year-old Payette more minutes. The Frenchman entered the starting eleven in Nice and, along with Sánchez, the club made a spectacular signing from Inter.
Marseille wasn’t the only team to showcase the punch away from home. Montpellier won 7–0 at Brest Manor. The 19-year-old striker Eli Wahi and Valere Germain made two braces to finish eighth in the table.
It was a tough loss for Brest coach Michel der Zakarian, who was a player of the club for 10 years.
A late header from striker Moussa Dembele held fourth-placed Lyon to a 1-1 draw with Reims.
Nantes came from behind to beat recently promoted Tolosa 3-1 at home; Lorient beat Clermont 2-1; and Troyes beat Angers 3-1.