posted on Mar, 5 2005 @ 04:45 PM
Lille missed a chance to rejoin the race for the Ligue 1 title on Saturday as they were surprisingly beaten 3-1 at Bastia whose coach Francois
Ciccolini had been one game away from the sack.
The relegation-threatened Corsicans remain in the bottom three but the win against third-placed Lille will also be welcomed in Lyon.
Champions and Ligue 1 leaders Lyon had surprisingly lost 1-0 at Caen on Friday evening but Lille missed the chance to trim their lead to six points.
Mathieu Debuchy gave Lille an 18th-minute lead but then Bastia seized control with three goals in 10 first-half minutes.
Moroccan Youssouf Hadji equalised and then Stephane Ziani and Romain Rocchi completed the turnaround for the Corsicans whose coach Ciccolini had been
told that defeat would have meant the sack. Now Lyon will be hoping that their local rivals St Etienne can do them another favour by getting a result
on Sunday against second-placed Marseille who would move within five points if they could win that match.
Monaco also missed a chance to move closer to the leaders when they were held 0-0 by Metz.
Lens stretched their unbeaten run to five games with an ultimately comfortable 3-1 victory over Auxerre at the Stade Felix-Bollaert. A first minute
goal from Olivier Thomert and a second half double from John Utaka proved sufficient for the home side and also went some way to making amends for
their 3-0 capitulation in the reverse fixture back in October. However for the visitors, whose goal was scored by Arnaud Gonzalez, it was their fourth
straight defeat on their travels.
Rennes beat Sochaux 3-0 in a match where three players were sent off. Goals from Alexander Frei and Kim Kallstrom gave Rennes a 2-0 lead inside 13
minutes but in the 65th minute Sochaux's Jeremy Menez and Rennes' Cyril Jeunechamp were cautioned. Six minutes later Sochaux's Omar Daf was also
banished and in stoppage time Frei scored his second of the night.
A late goal from Portuguese international Pedro Pauleta gave Paris St Germain a 1-0 win at the expense of Nantes at the Parc des Princes.
Bottom club Istres were beaten 1-0 at their adopted Nimes home by Bordeaux who scored through Kalu Uche with 10 minutes remaining.
Strasbourg won their relegation dogfight with Ajaccio with a first-half goal from Jean-Christophe Devaux separating the teams.
Ajaccio's Nenad Dzodic was later sent off.
Daniel Moreira's first-half goal gave Toulouse a 1-0 win at home to Nice.
[Edited on 5/3/05 by TRD]