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Mbappe hat-trick as PSG go top in French league


Kylian Mbappe has scored a hat-trick and Gianluigi Donnarumma made six decisive saves to send Paris Saint-Germain to the top of the French league with a 3-0 win at Reims.

Four days after a Champions League loss to AC Milan, it was a hard-fought win for PSG, who were second best for long spells in the Champagne city on Saturday but were opportunistic and clinical in converting their chances.

Reims, one of the most attack-oriented teams in Ligue 1, had many chances to score but Donnarumma was unbeatable.

The fifth straight league win moved PSG one point above Nice, with Reims in fourth place, seven points off the pace.

Third-place Monaco lost ground to PSG after drawing 0-0 at Le Havre and lag three points behind.

After an uneventful 90 minutes, Le Havre were awarded a penalty when Edan Diop stepped heavily on Emmanuel Sabbi's foot. After a VAR check, the referee pointed to the penalty spot. Samuel Grandsir's poor attempt was saved by goalkeeper Philipp Kohn.

In Reims, PSG did not take long to break the deadlock when Ousmane Dembele accelerated and delivered a cross to the far post. Mbappe volleyed the ball from inside the box past Reims goalkeeper Yehvann Diouf after just two minutes.

That was Mbappe's 11th goal in the French league this season, and Dembele's fourth assist. Mbappe would later bring his season's tally to 13 in just 11 matches.

But it was not enough to fully satisfy PSG coach Luis Enrique.

"Kylian was the best in terms of goals. But I think there's still room for improvement, and we ask a lot more of the best players," he said.

PSG dominated possession but Reims was the better team for the remainder of the first half. Ito was a constant threat and forced two good saves from Donnarumma before Azor Matusiwa exploited a poor pass from the PSG 'keeper to steal the ball and then tried his luck, only to miss the target.

Donnarumma was decisive again to keep out an effort from Amir Richardson with a reflex save in the 39th minute.

Reims kept pressing for an equaliser in the second half and Donnarumma made another brilliant stop to deny a powerful header from defender Emmanuel Agbadou.

"He's an impressive player, he's a marvel of a 'keeper," Enrique said about Donnarumma.

Against the run of play, Mbappe doubled his team's lead at the conclusion of a move started by Dembele, who picked up Spain's Carlos Soler who set up an easy finish for Mbappe.

Donnarumma produced two more excellent saves in the 72nd and 76th minutes and Reims were punished on the break one last time when Mbappe was picked out in the box by Bradley Barcola.

PSG have now scored at least three goals in each of their last five league games.

Previous leaders Nice, the only team still unbeaten this season, were held to a 0-0 draw at midtable Montpellier on Friday.