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PSG secure last-minute win over Saint-Etienne to close gap on Ligue 1 leaders

Paris Saint-Germain closed the gap on Ligue 1 leaders Lille to one point with a last-gasp victory over Saint-Etienne on Sunday.

Mauro Icardi was his side’s saviour, popping up in the 95th minute to seal the vital three points. Saint-Etienne were on the back foot throughout but managed to stem the tide before the game burst into life in the final 15 minutes.

— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) April 18, 2021

First, the visitors took a shock lead at the Parc de Princes through Denis Bouanga. Kylian Mbappe then levelled things up before putting his side in front from the penalty spot with three minutes of normal time remaining.

The away side then thought they had earned a point in added time through Romain Hamouma, only for Mauro Icardi to convert the winner with seconds left to play. The victory was an important one for Mauricio Pochettino who has attracted criticism for his side’s shaky domestic form this season.

In recent times they have lost to Lille, Nantes and Monaco – results that had weakened their position in the title race. However, the win on Sunday means that they are now breathing down the neck of the league leaders. The title race does remain in Lille’s hands, though.

Daniel Congre, Sven Botman
Lille drew with Montpellier on Friday night | John Berry/Getty Images

Provided they win their remaining five games against Lyon, Nice, Lens, Saint-Etienne and Angers, Les Dogues will secure their first Ligue 1 trophy since 2011. This would end PSG’s stranglehold on French football with the Parisians winning in seven of the last eight seasons.

Their run in is considerably easier than Lille’s with games against Metz, Lens, Rennes, Reims and Brest to come. Saying that, they do have the distraction of a Champions League semi-final against Manchester City to contend with at the end of the month.

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