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Football | France

Montpellier shocked, PSG cruise



Paris Saint-Germain got the better of fellow Ligue 1 side Toulouse as they eased into the last 16 of the French Cup with a 3-1 victory at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday.

With Zlatan Ibrahimovic suspended, Kevin Gameiro was chosen to lead the home attack, and he took less than 10 minutes to put PSG in front when he applied an easy finish to Ezequiel Lavezzi's cross.

The visitors drew level soon after as Franck Tabanou headed home, but Carlo Ancelotti's side missed chances to retake the lead before the break, and eventually ran away with the tie in the second period.

Jeremy Menez, a halftime replacement for Gameiro, played a decisive role as he first set up Javier Pastore to make it 2-1 in the 48th minute and then slid in Lavezzi, whose cool clipped finish ended the contest.

The win means the capital club remain on course for a first-ever league and French Cup double.

Earlier, faltering Ligue 1 champions Montpellier were knocked out by top-flight rivals Sochaux to complete a miserable few days for the southern club.

Montpellier twice squandered a lead before losing 3-2 after extra time at home to Sochaux, with substitute Yassin Mikari netting the visitors' winner in the 107th minute at the Stade de la Mosson.

The Cup exit is the latest piece of bad news for Montpellier, who were knocked out of the League Cup at the semifinal stage at Rennes last week before conceding at the death to lose 3-2 at Marseille in the league on Saturday.

In addition, they sold captain Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa to Newcastle United on Tuesday, leading to reports that coach Rene Girard – furious at the loss of such a key player – would be leaving the club when his contract expires in the summer.

Nancy won 4-2 on penalties after a 2-2 draw away to Nice.

Enduring a miserable season, Ligue 1 strugglers Nancy had not won against top-flight opponents since August, and they were initially denied the victory when Dario Cvitanich scored for Nice seven minutes into injury time to force an extra half hour.

However, they eventually triumphed from the spot in a match played in front of a largely empty stadium as fans boycotted in protest at the kick-off time, mid-afternoon on a Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Saint-Etienne hardly covered themselves in glory in their tie away to sixth-tier regional league club Meaux.

Remarkably, the minnows held on at 0-0 until the end of extra time despite having a man sent off in the 35th minute, but eventually succumbed 5-3 in the shoot-out.

Top-flight duo Bordeaux and Brest both came from behind to win their ties away to lower-league Moulins and CA Bastia respectively.

Marseille's tie away to third-division Rouen, which was postponed on Tuesday because of a major gas leak in the Normandy city, will now be played on January 30.

Lille travel to Plabennec, of the fourth tier, on Thursday.

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