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By ESPN Staff
Apr 2, 2008

Ligue 1: PSG out of drop zone after Strasbourg win

PARIS, April 2 (Ligue 1) - Paris St Germain lifted themselves out of the Ligue 1 relegation zone thanks to substitute Amara Diane's 73rd-minute winner against Strasbourg on Wednesday.

The pacy forward slotted home Bernard Mendy's excellent cut-back to earn PSG a deserved victory, their first in the league since January 23.

It puts the capital club fourth from bottom, level on points and goal difference with their vanquished opponents, who remain 16th.

And it provided them with another shot in their arm after their 2-1 win over Lens in the Coupe de la Ligue final on Saturday.

There was plenty of urgency in PSG's play but up until Diane's goal, they lacked a cutting edge.

Pedro Pauleta had a goal disallowed in the 16th minute for offside, while both he and Zoumana Camara had headers cleared off the line in the opening 45 minutes.

France winger Jerome Rothen set both those chances up and he was also the provider when Clement Chantome glanced a header just wide in the 36th minute.

At the other end, PSG goalkeeper Mickael Landreau had to be alert to tip first-half efforts by Kevin Gameiro and Pascal Johansen wide.

The temperature rose inside the Parc des Princes after the break as PSG became more desperate, and most of the 22 players on show were involved in some push and shove after a late challenge by Pauleta on Strasbourg goalkeeper Stephane Cassard on the hour.

But the hosts held the whip hand and they deservedly went in front with 17 minutes left when two substitutes combined.

Mendy's incisive run down the right flank ended with him cutting in and delivering a perfect lay-off to Diane, who swept the ball home from eight yards.

PSG endured a few nervy moments towards the end, especially when Landreau was forced to save Eric Mouloungui's drive with his feet, but they held on.