Player Ratings: PSG Remain Perfect With Win Over Saint-Etienne

Paris Saint-Germain have now captured maximum points from their first four matches of the Ligue 1 season by recording a clinical 3-0 victory over AS Saint-Etienne. The Parisians put in an efficient performance with Edinson Cavani scoring a brace and Thiago Motta scoring his maiden goal of the season. Neymar Jr. failed to get on the score sheet for the first time in a PSG shirt, but still put in a good showing at the Parc de Princes. With this result, PSG go into the international break in joint first place, depending on what happens with AS Monaco when they play Olympique de Marseille on Sunday.

Cavani opened the scoring with a penalty that he won when he was brought down in the box while trying to reach a Neymar through ball. PSG doubled the lead in the 51st minute when Motta scored off a Neymar free kick which was brilliantly chested down for Motta by Marquinhos. Cavani wrapped up the game with a super flick late in the game, which involved a triangle of passes between Neymar, Thomas Meunier, and Cavani. The most pleasing thing about this result for PSG fans is Alphonse Areola’s form as he was largely responsible for PSG keeping a clean sheet.


Cavani was slightly wasteful in front of goal but took his two chances with aplomb and stretched his lead at the top of Ligue 1 scoring charts. He was fortuitous with the penalty though as the contact looked to be outside of the box.

Areola  hasn’t been called into action much of the first few games of the new season but he came up big in the two occasions he was called into action against Saint-Etienne especially his one-on-one save against Jonathan Bamba in the first half.


Presnel Kimpembe looked shaky overall and handed Bamba a golden opportunity to level the score in the first half. Thankfully, Areola came up big and made a wonderful save with his legs to ensure that PSG went into halftime with the lead.

Manager rating out of 10

7 Emery did a better job shuffling his pack against Saint-Etienne and giving opportunities to Meunier, Javier Pastore and Kimpembe. This kind of rotation is going to prove vital when PSG start playing twice a week once UEFA Champions League rolls around.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Alphonse Areola, 8 Areola was immense against Saint-Etienne and helped preserve a valuable clean sheet. These kinds of performances will go a long way in ending the goalkeeper debate at PSG.

DF Thomas Meunier, 7.5 Meunier was pivotal in the build-up to the third goal and looked sharp all night both offensively and defensively. Meunier provides a valuable cover for Dani Alves and his form is encouraging news considering the amount of games PSG will play across four competitions.

DF Presnel Kimpembe, 6 The French center-back like last week did not look in complete control and could have cost PSG some points if not for Areola’s amazing save. He needs to step up if he wants to pressure Thiago Silva and Marquinhos for the starting center-back slots.

DF Marquinhos, 7 The former Giallorossi man looked better today than last week and was crucial in PSG maintaining the clean sheet against a pacy Saint-Etienne offense.

DF Layvin Kurzawa, 6.5 Kurzawa was compact defensively and looked lively offensively too. He started to look tired towards the end of the game and was rightly subbed off by Emery in the 80th minute.

MF Thiago Motta, 7.5 The Italian anchor man again did a good job shielding the back four well and capped off a great performance by poking the ball past Stéphane Ruffier to seal all three points for Les Parisiens.

MF Javier Pastore, 6.5 Pastore got a well deserved start and played his part well both offensively and defensively.

MF Adrien Rabiot, 7 This was another solid performance from the Frenchman who looks to be having a breakout year in the center of the park.

FW Angel Di Maria, 6.5 Di Maria looked lively on more than a few occasions, got past a few defenders, hit the woodwork, and fluffed his lines when he should have done better. Di Maria put in another classic Di Maria performance. Maybe Emery needs to start looking at giving Julian Draxler a chance in the starting XI if the trend continues.

FW Edinson Cavani, 8 Cavani should have done better with an open goal opportunity after he reacted superbly to a rebound in the 74th minute. Apart from that, Cavani did the business again by converting a penalty in the first half and capping off a great team goal towards the end of the game. El Matador already has 5 goals from 4 games and is gunning to win the Ligue 1 top scorer award again.

FW Neymar, 7.5 Neymar was involved in all of the three goals against Saint-Etienne and continued his superb start to life in Ligue 1.


DF Yuri Berchiche, NA Yuri was brought on late in the second half to replace a tired Kurzawa and went close to scoring with a shot from inside the box, but he dragged his effort wide of the right post.

FW Julian Draxler, NA Draxler was introduced for the last 7 minutes to give Di Maria a breather. Draxler is still recovering from injury and did not have too much time to make an impact against Saint-Etienne.

MF Giovani Lo Celso, NA Lo Celso was introduced in the 84th minute and his only meaningful impact was when he came close to scoring in the 88th minute, but Ruffier parried the ball away for a corner.

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Tags Adrien Rabiot Alphonse Areola Angel Di Maria AS Saint-Etienne Dani Alves Edinson Cavani Giovani Lo Celso Javier Pastore Julian Draxler Layvin Kurzawa Ligue 1 Marquinhos Neymar player ratings Presnel Kimpembe Thiago Motta Thiago Silva Thomas Meunier Unai Emery Yuri Berchiche
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