Football

Published: Sunday December 8, 2013 MYT 3:22:07 AM
Updated: Sunday December 8, 2013 MYT 3:22:16 AM

Ibrahimovic on fire as PSG demolish Sochaux

Paris St Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (L) celebrates next to Maxwell after scoring against FC Sochaux during their French Ligue 1 soccer match at the Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris December 7, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Paris St Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (L) celebrates next to Maxwell after scoring against FC Sochaux during their French Ligue 1 soccer match at the Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris December 7, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

PARIS (Reuters) - Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored two late goals and set up two more as Paris St Germain returned to winning ways with a thumping 5-0 victory over visitors Sochaux to open up a four-point lead at the top of Ligue 1 on Saturday.

Ibrahimovic grabbed the final two goals in the 87th minute and in stoppage time having already set up Thiago Silva for the early opener and Edinson Cavani for the third past the hour, with Ezequiel Lavezzi also finding the net in between.

The win put the champions, who surprisingly suffered their first defeat of the season at Evian Thonon Gaillard on Wednesday, on 40 points from 17 games ahead of second-placed Lille's trip to Girondins Bordeaux on Sunday (2.00 p.m. British time).

Sochaux remain bottom on eight points.

"We just needed to bounce back from that defeat, which showed that when we are not at 100 per cent anyone can beat us," goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu told Canal Plus.

PSG certainly looked at their best on Saturday.

Thiago Silva latched on to Ibrahimovic's cross to score from close range in the 15th minute as PSG dominated possession.

Lavezzi doubled the tally two minutes into the second half by poking the ball home from Thiago Motta's pass in the area, after a neat one-two between the Argentine and Ibrahimovic had initiated the move.

PSG took complete control in the 62nd minute when Uruguay striker Cavani controlled Ibrahimovic's superb cross before flicking the ball past Pierrick Cros for his 11th league goal of the season.

Sweden forward Ibrahimovic then took his season's tally to 13 goals in Ligue 1 with a powerful free kick before latching on to Cavani's cross to rub salt in Sochaux's wounds.

Ibrahimovic has now scored 11 goals in his last eight league outings.

Earlier, fifth-placed Olympique Marseille, who lost 1-0 at home to Nantes on Friday, said their coach Elie Baup was being replaced by sporting director Jose Anigo, who takes over on a caretaker basis until the winter break, which starts on December 23.

Montpellier also announced that Rolland Courbis was set to take the manager's job from departing Jean Fernandez on Monday.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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