Soccer-Ben Arfa shines as PSG see off Avranches to reach Cup semis


PARIS, April 5 (Reuters) - Hatem Ben Arfa made a case for a regular place in the team when he scored twice and set up another to earn a largely reserve Paris St Germain side a 4-0 win at third division Avranches and a spot in the French Cup semi-finals on Wednesday.

Ben Arfa, who has only started five Ligue 1 games this season after joining from Nice, struck each side of the interval as the defending champions joined En Avant Guingamp, Angers and Monaco in the last four.

PSG were without striker Edinson Cavani, winger Angel Di Maria, captain Thiago Silva and influential midfielder Marco Verratti, but Ben Arfa inspired the team to a routine win at Caen's Michel d'Ornano stadium.

He put his side ahead as he fired a splendid strike from the edge of the box into the far top corner after his attempt took a slight deflection off Jonathan Clauss's head in the 35th minute.

Ben Arfa, who last month in a video on Instagram asked coach Unai Emery to give him a chance, doubled the tally eight minutes into the second half by tapping in a pass by Lucas.

Brazilian forward Lucas then found the back of the net, firing home after chesting the ball down from Blaise Matuidi's cross on 56 minutes.

Argentine playmaker Javier Pastore added a fourth eight minutes from time with a lob after being perfectly set up by Ben Arfa.

Earlier, goals by Kevin Berigaud and Cheikh N'Doye gave Angers a 2-1 home win against Girondins de Bordeaux.

Monaco bounced back from their League Cup final defeat against PSG by beating Lille 2-1 on Tuesday as Guingamp advanced into the semi-finals with a 1-0 victory at fourth division Frejus St Raphael. (Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Brian Homewood)

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