AAP Soccer

Neymar returns, PSG beat Lille in Ligue 1

By AAP Newswire

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar returned from injury to help the side stretch their French league lead with a routine 2-0 win over Lille.

First-half goals from Mauro Icardi and Angel di Maria were enough for PSG to open an 11-point gap ahead of the rest of the 14th round.

Perhaps more importantly, Neymar played for the first time since October 5 and declared himself fit for the trip on Tuesday to Real Madrid in the Champions League.

Icardi opened the scoring in the 17th minute when di Maria sent through Idrissa Gueye, who crossed for the Argentine's sixth goal of the season.

Lille goalkeeper Mike Maignan made a fine save to deny Gueye just afterward, before Neymar showed his skill by eluding two defenders with a clever trick before sending the ball to di Maria.

Julian Draxler set up di Maria for PSG's second goal in the 31st and should have scored himself after the break when he fired over with only Maignan to beat.

Neymar came off for Kylian Mbappe around the hour mark, and the 20-year-old France star was involved straight away, forcing a save from Maignan at his near post.

Loic Remy came closest for Lille after a di Maria mistake in the 75th.

The visitors dropped to seventh after their third consecutive league defeat.