2017/18 French Ligue 1, Regular Season
  • Issa Diop (68' OG)

Neymar goal all PSG need to see off Toulouse

PARIS -- Neymar showed there was no hangover from his lavish birthday party earlier in the week by scoring the winner as leaders Paris Saint-Germain won at Toulouse 1-0 in Ligue 1 on Saturday.

Neymar settled a scrappy match with a typical moment of skill midway through the second half. He drifted into the left side of the penalty area and cut past two players before his deflected shot fortuitously wrong-footed goalkeeper Alban Lafont.

The win moves PSG 13 points clear of second-place Marseille, who drew at Saint-Etienne 2-2 on Friday.

But this was a largely uninspired PSG performance aside from Neymar. He has 19 goals in 18 league games since joining from Barcelona for a world record €222 million.

Neymar had plenty of spare cash to throw a mega-party last Sunday to celebrate turning 26. He privatised a Parisian club and invited 300 guests -- including his teammates, his coach and his club president -- and 50 partygoers from Brazil.

As a result, coach Unai Emery gave Neymar a rest on a chilly Tuesday when PSG played at Sochaux in the Coupe de France; and it proved a judicious move as the silky Brazil international looked in fine form. He almost added a second goal late on with a brilliant curling shot from 25 metres that bounced off the crossbar.

PSG need Neymar like this as the club have a massive game at Real Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday, in the first leg of the round of 16.

PSG have a big point to prove after being humiliated 6-1 by Barcelona in the second leg at the same stage last year -- with Neymar PSG's chief tormentor that night.

French Ligue 1 Standings