March 12, 2019 / 8:28 PM / 4 months ago

PSG bounce back from European exit with Dijon win

Soccer Football - Ligue 1 - Dijon vs Paris St Germain - Stade Gaston Gerard, Dijon, France - March 12, 2019 Paris St Germain's Juan Bernat in action with Dijon's Cedric Yambere REUTERS/Emmanuel Foudrot

(Reuters) - Paris St Germain returned to action for the first time since their traumatic Champions League exit to crush Dijon 4-0 and extend their Ligue 1 advantage to 17 points on Tuesday.

PSG made four changes to the starting lineup that lost 3-1 at home to Manchester United in the Champions League Round of 16 last Wednesday although Presnel Kimpembe, who conceded a last-gasp penalty via a disputed VAR decision, was retained.

If the French champions needed a gentle return to action they got their wish with struggling Dijon offering little once Marquinhos gave Thomas Tuchel’s side a seventh-minute lead.

Kylian Mbappe doubled PSG’s advantage shortly before halftime after good work by Angel di Maria.

Di Maria’s exquisite free kick made it 3-0 five minutes after the interval and Mbappe was then denied by the woodwork before Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting rounded off a comfortable night’s work with PSG’s fourth goal in stoppage time.

Tuchel praised his side’s reaction after last week’s meltdown against United when they allowed a 2-0 first-leg victory to be overturned by injury-hit opposition.

“The team reacted well, it was a first step,” he said.

“The challenge was to show we react like champions. It’s been a tough few days, but to respond, to show we are a united team with a special spirit, was an obligation.”

PSG have 74 points from 27 games with second-placed Lille on 57 from 28.

Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Toby Davis and Ken Ferris

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