PARIS (Reuters) – Lionel Messi scored and assisted to inspire Paris Saint-Germain to a 4-3 win over Troyes on Saturday as they extended their lead at the top of Ligue 1 to five points.

The result made unbeaten PSG 35 from 13 games ahead of second-placed Lance, who beat Toulouse 3-0 on Friday.

Mama Bald put mid-table Troyes ahead twice before Messi took control, scoring his seventh Ligue 1 goal of the season and taking his tally of assists to 10, the highest in the league.

PSG started slowly and Troyes needed just three minutes to stun the Parc des Princes crowd when Abdou Conte raced down the touchline to send a cross into the box where Ronnie Lopez created a chance for Balde to volley into the net.

Troyes frustrated PSG, but the home side remained patient and it paid off in the 24th minute when Neymar spotted Carlos Soler’s puck, slotting the ball into the box for the Spanish midfielder to round goalkeeper Gautier Gallon and score.

Balde restored Troyes’ lead seven minutes into the second half, receiving a cross from a cross and slotting it past goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.

He could have had a third when he tried to beat PSG’s high line before being denied by the linesman for offside, but Messi quickly stole the show.

The Argentinian first pulled the trigger from almost 30 meters out to equalize with a blistering strike, before turning provider moments later with a through ball and Neymar scoring as PSG took the lead for the first time in the match.

Gallon then brought down Soler in the box amid defensive confusion and Kylian Mbappe stepped in to score a penalty as PSG’s star attacking trio found the back of the net.

Troyes pulled one back in the closing stages when Ante Palaverso capitalized on poor marking to head home, but PSG held on for the three points.

Troyes remains in 11th place with 13 points.

(Reporting by Rohit Nair in Bangalore; Editing by Angus McSwan and Ken Ferris)


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