PARIS (Reuters) – Champions Paris St Germain continued their record-breaking start to the Ligue 1 season with a 1-0 home win over Toulouse on Saturday while Thierry Henry could at last celebrate his first win as Monaco manager with a 1-0 victory at Caen.
Second-last in the table having drawn two and lost four under former French international Henry, Monaco were desperate for a change of fortune — and Colombian forward Radamel Falcao provided it with a superb dipping free kick in the 54th minute.
Monaco rode their luck late on and had the video assistant referee (VAR) to thank for keeping their lead intact as Malik Tchokounte’s late effort was ruled out for offside following a lengthy review.
Earlier, Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani notched his ninth league goal of the season for PSG with a close-range finish after just nine minutes to earn the champions a 14th straight league win as they maintained their 100 percent league record.
Even though their much-vaunted attack misfired for much of the rest of the match, they were able to move on to a perfect 42 points, 15 ahead of second-placed Olympique Lyonnais.
At the foot of the table, Monaco remain 19th but moved three points clear of bottom club Guingamp, who lost 2-1 at Reims despite having been given late hope when Marcus Thuram scored from the penalty spot.
With attacking duo Neymar and Kylian Mbappe both sidelined after picking up knocks on international duty last week, PSG coach Thomas Tuchel started with Julian Draxler and Angel Di Maria up front alongside Cavani for the visit of lowly Toulouse.
Yet despite starting the day two points above the drop zone, Toulouse showed no fear of a PSG side that has been averaging over three goals a game at home, and their strong defending provided a springboard for plenty of attacks of their own.
Substitute Jimmy Durmaz was the driving force behind several promising second-half counter-attacks for the visitors, but the PSG backline, marshalled by Gianluigi Buffon in goal, managed to hold firm.
Brazilian defender Dani Alves came on as a second-half substitute for PSG to end a six-month spell on the sidelines with a knee injury that caused him to miss the World Cup in Russia.
Neymar and Mbappe are also scheduled to return when PSG meet Liverpool in a crucial Champions League Group C tie in Paris on Tuesday.
In Saturday’s other games, a brilliant late goal by Majeed Waris gave Nantes a 1-1 draw at home to Angers, while a powerful downward header from a corner by Herve Lybohy secured a 1-0 win for Nimes away at 10-man Strasbourg.
Dijon remain third from bottom on 12 points after their gritty scoreless draw at home to Bordeaux.
Third-placed Lille are away to Nice on Sunday, while Montpellier, in fourth, host Rennes, and Amiens are at home to Olympique Marseille.
(Reporting by Philip O’Connor; Editing by Ian Chadband)