Neymar's midweek trip to Brazil had little impact on his performance as he played a part in all of Paris Saint-Germain's goals in a 4-1 Ligue 1 win at Rennes on Saturday.
The world's most expensive player returned to South America to deal with a personal issue last week, ruling him out of Wednesday's Coupe de la Ligue victory over Strasbourg.
But the former Barcelona man appeared fresh as he opened the scoring in the fourth minute, before teeing up Kylian Mbappe for the league leaders' second.
Firmin Mubele pulled a goal back for Rennes early in the second half, but the task of completing the turnaround became tougher when captain Benjamin Andre was sent off shortly after the hour mark.
And Neymar's ball over the top played in Edinson Cavani for a delightful chip to make it 3-1 after 75 minutes, before PSG's star man added further gloss with another goal assisted by Mbappe.
2 - Games with at least 1 goal AND 1 assist in the Top 5 European leagues this season:— OptaJean (@OptaJean) 16 December 2017
Kylian Mbappé 5
Leroy Sané 4
An 89th-minute red card for Presnel Kimpembe had little impact on the closing minutes, with Wahbi Khazri clearing the crossbar from the resulting penalty.
The result – PSG's sixth win in a row against Rennes – restores their lead at the top of Ligue 1 to nine points over second-placed Monaco.
Neymar was suspended for last weekend's victory over Lille but took just four minutes to make an impact at Roazhon Park, tapping in from close range after determined work from Mbappe on the right of the box to set up the opportunity.
The visitors were dominating possession and Neymar had an effort deflected just wide of the left-hand post six minutes later, before returning Mbappe's earlier favour with the assist for PSG's second.
The Brazil international was allowed to run in behind Hamari Traore down the left, squaring the ball with the outside of his right boot to set up another simple finish for Mbappe.
There was little by way of an attacking threat from Rennes, who elected to rest in-form forward Khazri for the visit of Unai Emery's side, and Traore was lucky to escape punishment after catching Yuri Berchiche with his studs in an untidy challenge.
Traore was not so fortunate when he desperately brought down the advancing Neymar moments later, picking up the game's first booking, before Morgan Amalfitano fired the hosts' only real chance of the first half wide of the right-hand post.
Edinson Cavani almost made it 3-0 just before the break but Traore was on the line to keep out a delicious flick, and another effort from the Uruguayan was thwarted by goalkeeper Tomas Koubek.
Koubek had to be alert again early in the second period, as a curling Neymar strike drew a diving save from the Czech Republic international, but Rennes halved the deficit eight minutes after the restart.
Amalfitano stooped to head a corner against the post and Mubele was on hand to touch home the rebound after the ball bounced across the face of goal.
That joy was short-lived for the home side, however, as skipper Andre was sent off for two bookings in the space of nine minutes.
Khazri – off the bench in place of Mubele – had substantial penalty claims turned down by referee Antony Gautier in the 67th minute, when he went to ground with more than a helping hand from Kimpembe.
Any lingering hopes of a turnaround were all but ended when Cavani lifted a perfectly weighted chip over Koubek in the 75th minute, and Neymar – sliding in to meet an Mbappe cross – finished the job a minute later.
Kimpembe's reckless high boot earned him a second yellow a minute from time and afforded Rennes one last chance for a consolation goal, but Khazri blasted over from the spot.
Key Opta stats:
- Rennes have lost their last six encounters with Paris in Ligue 1 for the first time. This is their biggest defeat at home against Paris.
- The last three times Rennes have conceded four + goals in a Ligue 1 game have all come versus Paris: 29 April 2016 (0-4), 6 November 2016 (0-4) & today (1-4).
- Paris have scored 55 goals in Ligue 1 2017-18, their highest tally after 18 games. Only Sochaux have done better at this stage in 1935-36 (56).
- Neymar has scored and assisted a goal six times in 13 Ligue 1 games this season (46%). Kylian Mbappe has done so five times (in 14 games), more than any other player from the top five leagues.
|Durant continues dominance over Cavs as Warriors win|
|Halep survives scare and rolled ankle at Melbourne Park|
|Westbrook ejected against Kings after arguing call|
|Djokovic eases past Young on return|
|Sharapova staying grounded after Melbourne win|
|Neville: Mourinho would happily swap Mkhitaryan for Sanchez|
|Raonic suffers surprise loss in Melbourne|
|Sharapova wins on return to Australian Open|
|Pirates send McCutchen to Giants|
|Man United becoming Pogba´s team – Mourinho|
|Saints, Steelers coaching staffs to lead Pro Bowl teams|
|LeBron says we cannot let racism ´conquer us as people´|
|Super Bowl hopeful Belichick cautiously preparing for Jaguars|
|Cardinals veteran Yadier Molina: Three more years before retirement|
|The best finishes in NFL playoff history - Where does Keenum & Diggs´ Minneapolis miracle rank?|
|Can ´talking with everyone´ but hints at Liverpool stay|
|Mourinho ´not unconfident´ Manchester United will sign Sanchez|
|Pogba warns City that United will not give up the chase|
|Assist king Pogba matches De Bruyne, Sane despite injury and suspension|
|Manchester United 3 Stoke City 0: Valencia, Martial and Lukaku trim gap at the top|
|Shaw feeling on top of his game amid United run|
|Ulster and Ireland wing Bowe to retire|
|Mkhitaryan left out by Manchester United amid Arsenal talk|
|Inter secure Lopez on loan from Benfica|
|Hurst marvels at hat-trick maestro Kane|
|WATCH: Neymar nutmegging for fun in PSG training|
|Best eager to sort out Ireland future|
|Bastareaud and Haskell to learn fate on Wednesday|
|Nantes´ Carlos has red card overturned after being kicked by referee|
|De Villiers leads Proteas´ recovery following imperious Kohli century|
|´Logical´ for Aubameyang to stay at Dortmund, says Stoger|
|Di Resta out of Williams running|
|Stokes ´keen´ for court appearance after affray charge|
|Titans part ways with Mularkey|
|Stupid not to - Giggs seeks Fergie´s advice upon taking Wales job|
|Young hails Wasps´ capture of ´world class´ Sopoaga|
|England all-rounder Stokes charged with affray|
|Nadal expects to get better in Melbourne|
|Suarez feared Chiellini bite would derail Barca transfer|
|Dortmund sign reported Man United target Akanji|
|Short stars again in Hurricanes´ fifth straight win|
|Bangladesh trounce Zimbabwe in tri-nations opener|
|Wales confirm Giggs appointment|
|Barcelona´s Dembele out for up to four weeks|
|Nadal through as five seeds fall in Australian Open first round|
|Williams, Stephens out as American women stumble at Australian Open|
|Wozniacki not getting carried away as seeds tumble|
|Struggling Stoke appoint Lambert|
|Referee suspended until further notice after kicking Nantes´ Carlos|
|Mercedes lead tributes to Gurney|
|Coutinho´s ´deserved´ Barca move, says Figo|
|Toulon stand by Bastareaud after alleged homophobic slur|
|Burgos no match for sensational Nadal|
|Fatigue the issue for goal-shy Chelsea - Conte|
|Wozniacki impresses in first-round triumph|
|West Brom legend Regis dies aged 59|
|Mourinho: I don´t like feuding with managers|
|Venus says she didn´t play bad despite shock Aus Open exit|
|Puel confident of keeping Mahrez at Leicester|
|Valverde: Real Madrid haven´t given up on LaLiga|
|Ibrahimovic nearing end at top level – Mourinho|
|Davis leads Pelicans past Knicks with 48 points|
|US Open runner-up Anderson upset by Edmund|
|Kizzire survives six-hole play-off at Sony Open in Hawaii|
|Venus Williams ousted by Bencic at Aus Open|
|Lakers rookie Ball´s MRI clean, questionable for Monday|
|US Open champion Stephens a first-round casualty in Melbourne|
|Vikings react to ´unbelievable´ win over Saints|
|Steelers QB Roethlisberger plans to return next season|
|WATCH: Diggs´ walk-off TD sends Vikings through to NFC championship|