PSG stunned by 3-2 defeat to struggling Sochaux
PARIS (AP) — French leader Paris Saint-Germain defended shoddily and was dominated in midfield as it lost 3-2 at relegation battlers Sochaux on Sunday to give rivals Lyon and Marseille renewed hope in a title race that looked to be getting away from them.
While Marseille and Lyon won their matches this weekend, PSG lost for the first time since Dec. 1 and conceded three goals for the first time this season against a valiant Sochaux team that was in 17th place before kickoff and has nothing like PSG's massive spending power.
"It's a logical defeat because Sochaux played well. They were more aggressive," PSG coach Carlo Ancelotti said. "I asked the players to be vigilant from the outset, because I knew Sochaux would be in great shape. But we were lacking in balance and aggression, especially in the first half."
It was a case of passion over pedigree as big-spending PSG was shaken from the outset and scored only from two corners, which was not enough as Sochaux tore PSG's defense apart at times and scored through Sebastien Roudet, Giovanni Sio and substitute Cedric Bakambu.
Earlier Sunday, Lyon bounced back from three straight losses with a 4-0 win at Bordeaux and is now three points behind PSG, which travels to play Marseille next weekend. Marseille is five points behind PSG in third place after scraping an injury-time win against Valenciennes on Saturday.
"We will focus on the next match, because nothing's over in terms of the title," Ancelotti said. "Everything's open."
Sochaux harried and caused problems early on, and Sio had the crowd on their feet with a blistering strike into the top right corner, only for the goal to be ruled out for offside.
With Sochaux well on top, Roudet's shot appeared to be going in but deflected off teammate Ryad Boudebouz and trickled wide.
PSG had to wait until the 28th minute for its first chance, when winger Ezequiel Lavezzi ran onto Zlatan Ibrahimovic's flick and sprinted clean through, but goalkeeper Simon Pouplin blocked his shot.
PSG took the lead moments later when Alex rose unchallenged to head Javier Pastore's corner over Pouplin and into the top corner.
But Sochaux was much the better side and equalized in the 36th, when Boudebouz flicked the ball superbly into the feet of Roudet, who charged forward before planting a low shot into the bottom right corner past goalie Salvatore Sirigu.
"We decided to press PSG up the pitch in order to unsettle them," Roudet said. "Ryad set me up superbly."
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