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Icardi double as PSG beat Reims

The return of Neymar Jr. after a two-match suspension meant coach Thomas Tuchel was able to name his Quatre Fantastiques from the start in Champagne country, with Angel Di María able to feature for the final time before beginning a four-game domestic ban.

There was pressure on Icardi to deliver, with the Argentine having come under scrutiny amid a poor run of form since football returned from the long coronavirus shutdown. However, Icardi rediscovered his goal-scoring touch here to put PSG in front in the ninth minute as he controlled a Kylian Mbappé pass and fired past Predrag Rajkovic.

The visitors had chances to increase their lead before the break, but at 1-0 Reims remained in the contest and they almost drew level just after the hour mark as a low Boulaye Dia strike came back off an upright.

Miserable start for Reims

Moments after that let-off Paris did increase their lead, with Mbappé squaring for Icardi to score a goal that was confirmed as onside after a VAR review.

Mbappé later missed a glorious chance to add his name to the scoresheet but PSG have a third consecutive win, and a third consecutive clean sheet, with their season now very much up and running after defeats in their opening two outings. They are now seventh in the fledgling table.

In contrast, a miserable start to the campaign continues for Reims, who have just one point to their name after this fourth successive league loss, which comes just 72 hours after David Guion’s side were knocked out of the Europa League on penalties by Hungarian club Fehérvár in the third qualifying round.

THE PLAYER: Mauro Icardi

Two goals will do the power of good to Icardi, who had not scored since February, a drought that had raised questions about PSG’s decision to make his loan move from Inter permanent for a reported initial fee of €50 million. He will now hope to build on this performance in the weeks ahead with PSG’s UEFA Champions League campaign starting next month.

THE STAT: 7

Icardi had gone almost exactly seven months without a goal since netting in a 4-0 win over Dijon FCO on February 29.

Source: Ligue1

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