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Dijon-FCO-v-AS-Monaco-Ligue-1.jpg

Benching Mbappe was “club decision” says Monaco boss amid PSG speculation

Date Posted,August 13, 2017

Kylian Mbappe was forced to watch on from the bench as Radamel Falcao scored a hat-trick to keep Monaco’s perfect Ligue 1 record in tact with a comfortable 4-1 triumph at Dijon.

Nine days on from Mbappe limping off in the 3-2 opener victory over Toulouse, and amid considerable speculation linking him with a move to Paris St Germain, the 18-year-old was named as a substitute by boss Leonardo Jardim.

And he remained unused as fellow forward Falcao took centre stage at the Stade Gaston Gerard.

Jardim says it wasn’t his choice.

“It’s a club decision not to have him start the game,” manager Jardim said after the match.

Mbappe applauds the crowd after the match (Image: Icon Sport)

“In the end, the game went smoothly and I gave the opportunity to other players to help make the building of the team more effective.

“In the coming months, with the Champions League, we’ll need everyone. We have to give rhythm to those who aren’t often used.”

The Colombian opened the scoring in the third minute, producing a close-range finish after Kamil Glik headed goalwards.

Mbappe watches on during the 4-1 win for his side (Image: Getty)

The visitors’ advantage was subsequently doubled 22 minutes later by a wonderful Jemerson overhead kick, before Falcao added his second in the 37th minute via a curling effort from the edge of the box that may or may not have taken a slight deflection off Cedric Yambere.

Dijon pulled a goal back a minute prior to the break when Wesley Said controlled a long ball over the top and prodded neatly through Danijel Subasic’s legs.

Falcao then wrapped up his treble with a powerful header six minutes after the break.

Mbappe in high spirits despite not being used (Image: REUTERS)

Earlier, Strasbourg secured their first top-flight win following promotion as they beat 10-man Lille 3-0 at home in a game that saw two outfield players spend time in goal for the away side.

Lille goalkeeper Mike Maignan was shown a straight red card in the 63rd minute for violent conduct having clashed with Strasbourg midfielder Benjamin Corgnet.

And with the visitors having made all three substitutions at that point, it was striker Nicolas de Preville who initially replaced Maignan in goal.

But after De Preville was beaten by Jonas Martin’s low shot into the bottom corner that gave Strasbourg a 74th-minute lead, defender and captain Ibrahim Amadou then took over between the posts.

He was then unable to keep out a penalty from Dimitri Lienard in the 82nd minute and an 88th-minute strike from Jeremy Grimm.

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