Falcao scores hat trick as Monaco beats Dijon 4-1

PARIS (AP) Radamel Falcao scored a hat trick as Monaco posted a 14th straight win in the French league in a 4-1 thrashing of Dijon on Sunday.

The Colombia striker needed just three minutes to put the defending champions in command and added two more goals in the 38th and 51st minutes.

Jemerson was also on the scoresheet for the visitors in the 25th, and Wesley Said pulled one back for Dijon just before halftime.

Monaco is unbeaten in the league since December last year and equaled Bordeaux’s record of 14 consecutive wins, set in August 2009. It moved level on points with leader Lyon, with two wins in two matches of the new season.

With Kylian Mbappe expected to leave in the coming weeks, Monaco can still count on Falcao’s superb skills to score goals. Falcao now has four goals in two league games after scoring last weekend in a 3-1 win against Toulouse, while Mbappe stayed on the bench in Dijon.

Falcao’s goal instinct was on display as he made no mistake from close range after the hosts failed to clear a corner. Jemerson made it 2-0 from another corner and Falcao curled a superb shot into the top right corner to extend Monaco’s lead.

Said kept Dijon’s hopes alive with a shot between the legs of `keeper Danijel Subasic. It was a short-lived respite for the hosts as Falcao met a cross from Thomas Lemar to seal his team’s win with a header six minutes into the second half.

HE’S (NOT) A ‘KEEPER

Forced to play without a proper goalkeeper in the final 27 minutes, Lille went down 3-0 at promoted Strasbourg in the French league on Sunday.

Striker Nicolas De Preville took the `keeper duties after Mike Maignan was sent off for throwing the ball at a Strasbourg player. Lille coach Marcelo Bielsa had already made his three substitutions and was unable to bring another goalkeeper on to the pitch.

De Preville remained in goal for 11 minutes until Jonas Martin broke the deadlock for the hosts. De Preville then left the gloves to midfielder Ibrahim Amadou, who conceded two more goals from Dimitri Lienard, who scored from the spot, and Jeremy Grimm.

Bielsa had to make two changes in the first 18 minutes after Thiago Mendes and Kevin Malcuit picked up injuries. Bielsa made a third replacement, for tactical reasons, before the interval.

It was Lille’s first loss after the northern side opened its season with a 3-0 win against Nantes last weekend. Strasbourg bounced back from a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Lyon in Week 1 to post a first win in the top flight since 2008.