Mbappe scores twice to lead PSG past Metz, younger brother makes league debut
PARIS (AP) — Kylian Mbappé celebrated his 25th birthday with two goals as Paris Saint-Germain beat lowly Metz 3-1 on Wednesday to head into the winter break with a five-point lead in the French league.
The France star got a birthday bonus when his 16-year-old brother Ethan Mbappé made his debut by coming on as a stoppage-time substitute.
Kylian Mbappé extended his league-leading tally to 18 goals. He has 21 goals overall this season, and since joining PSG from Monaco in 2017 he has netted a club record 233 goals in 282 appearances.
Mbappé's contract expires at the end of the season and he has yet to say whether he will sign an extension or leave on a free transfer, possibly to long-time suitor Real Madrid.
Portugal midfielder Vitinha guided in a cross from the left to put PSG ahead in the 49th minute following a drab first half and then provided the pass for Mbappé's trademark curling shot from the left of the penalty area into the top right corner in the 60th.
Although the shot was struck firmly and accurately, veteran goalkeeper Alexandre Oukidja was too far off his line and also jumped too early, allowing the ball to sail over him.
After defender Matthieu Udol headed a goal back in the 72nd following poor PSG marking on a corner, Mbappé profited from a defensive error to round Oukidja in the 83rd and tap in for 3-1.
Metz is down in 14th place and fans may not feel overjoyed that coach László Bölöni chatted at length and then posed for a photo with Mbappé in the tunnel following the match.
Second-place Nice stayed five points behind PSG with a 2-0 home win over seventh-place Lens, which had not lost in the previous 11 league games dating back to the previous defeat on Sept. 16. Nigeria striker Terem Moffi scored both goals late in the second half.
Wissam Ben Yedder is the only player to keep pace with Mbappé's scoring in recent seasons. The veteran striker scored both to reach eight goals as third-place Monaco won 2-1 at Toulouse to remain two points behind Nice.
Fourth-place Brest has been a surprise this season and a remarkable individual performance saw 20-year Mali midfielder Kamory Doumbia score four times in the first half in a 4-0 home win over Lorient.
After holding PSG to a 1-1 draw at home last weekend, Lille lost 2-1 at Strasbourg and dropped down to fifth.
Sixth-place Marseille needed a header from midfielder Jordan Veretout to draw 1-1 at southern rival Montpellier, while Japan forward Keito Nakamura's first-half goal earned eighth-place Reims a 1-0 home win against Le Havre.
Rennes recovered from conceding an early goal to win 3-1 at rock-bottom Clermont and veteran striker Alexandre Lacazette's goal ensured 15th-place Lyon beat Nantes 1-0 for a third straight win under interim coach Pierre Sage.
The 18-team league resumes on Jan. 12.
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