Paris win rollercoaster against Nantes!

Paris Saint-Germain earned a hard-fought 2-1 victory over FC Nantes in Ligue 1 Round 15 on Saturday, before turning their attention to a crucial European fixture next week. Here's a look back at a thrilling encounter!

A week after their 2-0 win at Le Havre, the Parisians were back in the thick of things at the Parc des Princes with one objective in mind: to make it eight in a row, having already won their last seven Ligue 1 outings. However, Les Rouge et Bleu were up against an FC Nantes side reinvigorated by the arrival of new coach Jocelyn Gourvennec.

With Les Canaris having beaten OGC Nice last week, and just a few days away from a crucial European match for Paris, this historic French league fixture had all the makings of a banana skin for the capital club. To thwart Nice's plans, Luis Enrique lined up Marquinhos and Danilo in central defence, with Arnau Tenas again deputising for the suspended Gianluigi Donnarumma in goal. In midfield, Manuel Ugarte played a holding role behind Vitinha and Carlos Soler, while Lee Kang-In and Bradley Barcola accompanied Kylian Mbappé up front.

Right from the start, the Parisians showed their intentions with an initial foray by Kylian Mbappé, who forced Alban Lafont into a refelx save with his leg (1'). It was the perfect way to kick-start what was sure to be a tight encounter, with Manuel Ugarte and Moussa Sissoko battling it out in the opening minutes. Achraf Hakimi was on hand to cut inside and break the deadlock in midfield, with Lee Kang-in on the right and Bradley Barcola on the left of the pitch.

At the end of the first quarter of an hour, Nantes broke into the Parisian penalty area for the first time and Florent Mollet fired in a powerful shot from the left, which was cleared for a corner by a vigilant Arnau Tenas (15'). But it was the capital club who were in control, patiently trying to create a gap in their opponents' coordinated and compact defence.

Les Rouge et Bleu were attack-minded, but struggled to break down a confident Nantes side. And while the majority of the Parisian attacks came from the right, with the enterprising duo of Hakimi and Lee, it was finally from the left that Paris managed to break down the opposition's stranglehold.

After a well-worked one-two between Vitinha and Barcola, the French U23 international got the better of Marcus Coco before bursting into the box and firing a right-footed shot into the far corner of the net (1-0, 41'). A first goal in his new colours for the Parisian winger, and what's more it put his side in front and - even more importantly - forced Nantes to open up more if they were to get back into the game.

In the second half, there was no letting up for the capital club, who continued to monopolise the ball against opponents who struggled to find solutions going forward. That is, until a seemingly innocuous set-piece saw Mostafa Mohamed equalise with a powerful header at the near post, well set up by Mollet (1-1, 55'). Caught cold by the tenacious Canaris, the Parisians had no choice but to react - and they could count on a crowd ready to redouble their efforts to encourage their players.

And it was Barcola who once again created the danger, but the Parisian striker failed to hit the target after a well-executed solo run down the left flank. Then it was Kylian Mbappé's turn, as he controlled the ball with his back to goal in the area before going down after yet more contact with Eray Cömert. Jérôme Brisard, the match referee, was unfazed by the crowd's whistles. As the game entered the final quarter of an hour, Paris continued to show patience to find space in their opponents' final thirty metres.

What Les Rouge et Bleu lacked was a spark to break down the Canaries' ironclad defence. Having already brought on Ousmane Dembélé and Warren Zaïre-Emery, Luis Enrique played his last cards as he brought Marco Asensio and Randal Kolo Muani on. And it was the latter who shone the brightest, on the spot to lash home after Alban Lafont could only parry Lucas Hernandez's header. The opportunistic Kolo Muani punished the Nantes keeper from close range to restore Paris' lead with a precious goal against his former team (2-1, 83')!

Les Canaris were overwhelmed by the Parisian waves at the end of the match, with Marco Asensio going close with a right-footed shot (85'). Moments later, it was Dembélé who forced Lafont into a fine diving save to keep his side in the game (89'). But it was not enough to prevent the Parisians from winning in front of a festive Virage Auteuil crowd, and thus recording another 2-1 victory over a resilient Nantes side.

At the end of a hard-fought encounter, Paris Saint-Germain notched up an eighth consecutive league win to consolidate their position at the top of the table, six points clear of AS Monaco and provisionally seven points ahead of OGC Nice, pending the outcome of Les Aiglons' match on Sunday. Les Rouge et Bleu will now face a very different yellow wall next Wednesday, when they take on Borussia Dortmund in the final match of the UEFA Champions League group stage. The date is set.