Kylian Mbappe began 2022 with a hat-trick as Paris Saint-Germain registered a romping 4-0 victory over Vannes in Coupe de France.

Paris Saint-Germain advanced to the Round of 16 of the Coupe de France by securing a comfortable 4-0 victory over Vannes on Monday. The win marks an excellent start to 2022 for the Ligue 1 toppers, giving them some much-needed momentum heading into an important league game against Lyon on the coming weekend.

It was a comprehensive performance from the French giants, who were by far the better of the two sides. They dominated possession right from the beginning, making life difficult for the Vannes defenders. However, the fourth-division outfit deserves some credit for remaining resolute at the back, especially in the first half, with Presnel Kimpembe’s 28th opener being the only goal to separate the two sides at half-time.

An improved second-half from the visitors saw them create opportunities at a higher rate. More importantly, they were far more clinical in front of goal, with star man Kylian Mbappe doubling PSG’s lead in the 59th minute. The Frenchman then doubled his own tally in the 71st minute, scoring his 200th career goal at the age of just 23.

Mbappe was lucky to score a hat-trick five minutes later when the absence of VAR meant Dina Ebimbe escaped the offside call. The midfielder made full use of the opportunity to square the ball up for Mbappe, who made no mistake in completing his hat-trick. Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the PSG players following their comprehensive win over Vannes on Monday.

Gianluigi Donnarumma: 6/10

Gianluigi Donnarumma had a quiet first half as Vannes failed to create anything meaningful going forward. However, the PSG goalkeeper was called into action a few times after the restart, notably taking care of a couple of strikes from Sebastien Persico. The former AC Milan shot-stopper later showed incredible reflex to keep out Taylor Salibur’s effort, although he was quite lucky as the ball looked to have crossed the line.

Colin Dagba: 6.5/10

Colin Dagba produced a standard display at right-back. He made himself available as a passing option in the build-up while helping out Thilo Kehrer whenever it was required. His influence in the game somewhat faded after the restart, but he remained solid in his defensive role.

Thilo Kehrer: 7/10

Kehrer made an overwhelming start to the game as the Vannes attackers targeted him as the weakest link in the PSG backline. The German prevailed in the defensive battles, though, remaining strong at the back and barely allowing the opposition to create chances. Unfortunately, his game was cut short after he sustained a muscle injury in the second half.

Presnel Kimpembe: 7.5/10

Presnel Kimpembe produced an excellent display at the heart of the PSG backline. He scored the all-important winner by netting a thumping header in the first half, before delivering a majestic long ball that found Mbappe for the second goal. Defensively, the centre-back was strong in dealing with the threat of Persico & co.

Nuno Mendes: 7.5/10

Nuno Mendes was another standout performer in the PSG backline. The youngster played out his attacking duties well, using his pace and trickery to make life difficult for the opposition defenders. His link-up play was quite impressive, but most importantly, the left-back delivered excellent crosses from wider areas, including the one that found Kimpembe for the opener.

Ander Herrera: 6.5/10

From an individual perspective, it was not the very best of performances from Ander Herrera. But the Spaniard offered a good balance to the team and his presence was vital in helping PSG initiate the press on the Vannes ball-carriers. He could have done a better job with his forward passes, though.

Marco Verratti: 7/10

Marco Verratti was the creator-in-chief in the PSG midfield. His silky footwork, coupled with his technical prowess and ability to move the ball forward, made a telling difference. He was notably involved in the build-up that led to Mbappe’s third goal of the night, with the midfielder expertly evading the press to release the ball forward.

Georginio Wijnaldum: 5/10

Georginio Wijnaldum was given a free role in the PSG side by Mauricio Pochettino. The former Liverpool star often drifted into the left-hand channel but was not shy of providing his services in the central areas of the pitch. Either way, the Dutchman struggled to make things happen in the final third, which is a cause for concern for Les Parisiens, and they may soon have to determine the midfielder’s future at the club.

Edouard Michut: 6/10

Edouard Michut showcased his versatility by popping on several different positions across the pitch, especially on the left flank. The youngster was even impressive at times with his link-up play with Mbappe & co. But overall, there was a lot of room for improvement, and the attacker might be better off leaving PSG in favour of a loan move elsewhere.

Xavi Simons: 5/10

Xavi Simons registered the assist for Mbappe’s second goal with a well-timed ball in between the Vannes defenders. But it was the only bright spark in an otherwise underwhelming performance from the former La Masia graduate. There was a sense of inefficiency about the youngster’s performance against Vannes, which may force PSG to ship him out in this January transfer window.

Kylian Mbappe: 9/10

Kylian Mbappe was the leader of the PSG attack in the absence of Lionel Messi and Neymar, while Mauro Icardi started on the bench. The Frenchman had struggled in a central role in the past this season, but he took the opportunity with aplomb, producing a majestic display in the final third.

Mbappe’s pace, coupled with his ability to run in behind defences, caused all sorts of problems for the Vannes defenders. In what was perhaps the biggest positive for PSG, the 23-year-old looked in ruthless touch in front of goal, notably bagging a hat-trick in the second half. He will be hoping for a similar outing when his team takes on Lyon this weekend.

SUBSTITUTES

Dina Ebimbe: 6.5/10

Dina Ebimbe produced the assist for Mbappe’s third goal of the night, but he was in an offside position. To his fortunes, it was not picked up by the linesmen.

El Chadaille Bitshiabu: 6/10

El Chadaille Bitshiabu replaced the injured Kehrer midway through the second half. He partnered Kimpembe at the heart of the PSG defence, helping PSG see out the threat from Vannes during the final phase of the game.

Ismael Gharbi: N/A

A late replacement for Herrera. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.

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