Caen fail to close gap on PSG after drawing at Monaco
PARIS — Second-place Caen failed to narrow the gap on runaway league leader Paris Saint-Germain after drawing 1-1 at Monaco on Wednesday.
Caen had to thank striker Ronny Rodelin for earning a point when he bundled the ball in for an 86th-minute equalizer.
The Normandy side remains 13 points behind PSG, which appears to be coasting to a fourth-straight title despite dropping rare points in Tuesday’s 0-0 draw at Angers.
A win would have moved Monaco to within one point of Caen, and the Principality side looked well set when striker Guido Carrillo grabbed his first league goal of the season in the 56th.
But Monaco remains in sixth place, level on points with seventh-place Saint-Etienne, which lost 1-0 away to struggling Lille.
Striker Yassine Benzia scored a spectacular winner for Lille.
Latching onto a long pass from Marvin Martin, he let the ball drop and hit an arching half-volley from the right of the penalty area into the opposite corner. The strike was somewhat similar to Marco van Basten’s stunning goal for the Netherlands against England at the 1988 European Championship.
It was also a much-needed win for Lille, which remains in the relegation zone – one point behind 17th-place Bordeaux.
”We’re relieved to win, especially given our situation,” said former Lyon forward Benzia, who was modest about his goal. ”Marvin picked me out; I just re-adjusted my balance and managed to score.”
Bordeaux coach Willy Sagnol was vague when questioned over his future following Bordeaux’s 1-0 defeat at Bastia, which followed last weekend’s 4-1 home defeat to Caen.
”The club’s in a difficult position,” the former France and Bayern Munich right back said. ”It’s down to the directors to lead the way.”
Striker Florian Raspentino struck in the 88th minute, his first goal of the season, to move Bastia above Bordeaux and into 16th spot.
Toulouse remains in next-to-last place despite securing a second straight win with a 3-0 victory at last-place Troyes.
Sixteen-year-old goalkeeper Alban Lafont – the youngest ever goalie in the French first division – kept a second consecutive clean sheet, distinguishing himself with three smart saves and good composure.
Toulouse took the lead in the second minute when 18-year-old center-half Issa Diop head home from a free-kick.
Defender Jean-Daniel Akpa-Akpro doubled the lead early in the second half and Serbian striker Aleksandar Pesic completed the win late on.
Also, Montpellier lost 2-0 at home to Corsican side Gazelec Ajaccio and Reims won 2-1 at Guingamp.
In that match, a huge blunder from goalkeeper Kossi Agassa helped Guingamp equalize on the stroke of halftime.
Midfielder Yannis Salibur tried his luck with a speculative free-kick from 40 yards (meters) out, and Agassa easily gathered it but stepped back over his line while doing so.
Referee Johan Hamel immediately pointed to his watch, signifying that video technology had told him the ball had crossed the line.
But after Salibur was red-carded five minutes into the second half, former Liverpool striker David N’Gog got his second of the night for Reims.
Rennes hosts Marseille in Thursday’s game.