Bordeaux 1 – 0 Lyon.
No Cavegol, no problem. French international and ex-Lyon player Alou Diarra’s 43′rd minute poke gave Les Girondins a deserved win against a rather lackluster Lyon side; adding misery to manager Claude Puel’s future and potentially kissed away Lyon’s title hopes.
In the biggest game of the Ligue 1 season, Laurent Blanc’s men outpaced, outfoxed, and outshone their opponents and the home fans outroared Lyon’s outmoded travelling supporters.
Once again Les Gones €18mil record signing Kader Keita produced another lethargic performance which left Benzema isolated up front and the young striker’s night didn’t get any better when the apathetic Frederic Piquonne replaced Keita in the second half.
The away team missed a glorious chance to equalize when Benzema found himself alone with Bordeaux goalkeeper Ulrich Rame but his lob was a tad too heavy as the ball sailed over the bar. Likewise Chamakh failed to make Lyon rue their missed chance when his close range low shot was saved by Hugo Lloris. Bordeaux’s fifth straight win saw them climb above the defending champions to second place. Lyon have 2 wins and one clean sheet in their past 10 games, and the prospect of the club playing in the Champions league looks increasingly unlikely.
Marseille march on
After rejecting a formal approach to coach his home country this past week, former Belgian football great Eric Gerets moved a step further to cement his legacy amongst the Marseille faithful as the club strengthened its hold at the helm of the table. L’OM wenr a goal down to Lorientin the 8th minute courtesy of lax defending which saw Kévin Gameiro round a hapless Mandanda to lot the ball in the net.
Eric Gerets half time team talk coupled with Sylvian Wiltord’s introduction paid off as his cross found Renato Civelli whose tap in levelled the match. The away side continued to press and were rewarded 11 minutes from time when newly arrived uncapped Brazilian striker Brandaoscored his 4th for the club, ensuring Marseille stayed top of the league for another week.
Ah, the glare from the Ligue 1 trophy wax has never shone so brightly at the Stade Veledrome.
Grenoble assured themselves of another season of top domestic league football with a 1 – 0 win over Toulouse. The away loss all but shut Toulouse’s title aspirations and Alain Cassanova’s men must now focus on securing a Europa league spot for next season.
Like Toulouse, Lille saw its slim title hopes draw to an end as Ilan and Batafemi Gomis sunk the Mastiffs. Goal shy striker Nicolas Fauvergue first league goal in the latter part of the second half wasn’t enough to as AS Saint Etienne held on to win the match 2 – 1. The much needed 3 points sees the 10 timeLigue 1 champions briefly ease relegation fears as they occupy 18th spot, tied on points with 17th place Sochaux.
Nancy’s consecutive wins has seen them secure a 4 point cushion above the drop spot. Yousouff Hadji’s 2nd minute strike, second goal in as many matches, gave the visitors a shock lead against Caen. The hosts crawled back with a late first half goal but were left broken hearted with a late winner by French youngster Geoffrey Adjet’s goal four minutes before the final whistle.
On the same front, FC Nantes were uncharitable when Nice paid a visit. The hosts comfortable two goal win margin leaps them off the relegation spot. Caen’s disastrous form – 1 win in thierpast 17 league games saw them swap places with Nantes, a far cry from their promising start to the season.
Goals from Giuly, Rothen and Hoarau effectively meant Havre – or in this case Have-nots will ply their trade in Ligue 2 next season. The Parisians are whiskers from securing Champions league football and are within a shout of the league title. Paul le Guen returns to the Stade de Gerland (a place he won 3 league titles) on Friday as PSG travel to Lyon, a must win for both teams.