Hat-trick star Kylian Mbappe matched one Ligue 1 record by scoring after just eight seconds in Lille to set Paris Saint-Germain on their way to a 7-1 victory on Sunday, while the division hit a modern high with 11 red cards in one weekend.
Mbappe equalled a 30-year-old record when he burst into space, collected a pass from Lionel Messi and surprised Lille goalkeeper Leo Jardim with a lob to score his second league goal of the season.
The goal matched Michel Rio’s strike for Caen against Cannes on February 15, 1992, although statisticians MisterChip calculated that Rio was slightly faster, scoring after 7.9sec to Mbappe’s 8.3.
Mbappe Tears Lille Apart
Mbappe then hit a post when facing an open goal, but Messi, Achraf Hakimi and Neymar all scored before half-time as PSG tore apart the only other club to win the French title in the last five seasons.
Stories of tensions between two of PSG’s superstars, Mbappe and Neymar, had swirled around the club this week but the Brazilian scored twice and Mbappe three times.
“It’s a real satisfaction to see them happy on the field, playing for each other,” PSG coach Christophe Galtier said.
“Obviously there is talent, and when this talent comes together, it makes for a very enjoyable match.”
Neymar added a fifth early in the second half. After Jonathan Bamba replied for Lille, Mbappe struck twice, set up both times by Neymar.
The match ended a weekend when French football saw red, as referees applied for a new “firmness order”.
After Vanderson of Monaco and Samuel Gigot of Marseille were sent off on Saturday, there were nine more reds on Sunday, setting a single-round high in Ligue 1 for the last 30 years, according to statistics company Opta.
There were also seven reds in Ligue 2, three of them for Saint-Etienne as they lost 6-0 at home to Le Havre.
The last two reds on Sunday came in Rennes, where, despite a warning from their coach, Ajaccio finished with 10 men as Lesley Ugochukwu, who had only come on for Ajaccio five minutes earlier, was shown red in added time.