Kadir’s goal enough for Valenciennes
A goal just after half-time by Foued Kadir saw struggling Valenciennes spring a big surprise as they beat Ligue 1 leaders Montpellier 1-0 on Saturday.
Kadir pounced on a poor clearance by Montpellier goalkeeper Geoffrey Jourdren, with Nicolas Penneteau denying the league leaders in injury time as Valenciennes claimed just their fourth win of the season.
The result, as well as Paris St Germain’s victory earlier, sees the capital side draw level with Montpellier at the top of the table.
There were few clear-cut chances in the first half.
John Utaka crossed to Geoffrey Dernis who was unmarked at the penalty spot and he put his header inches over the bar.
Gael Danic then hit a free-kick directly at the goalkeeper before Valenciennes almost made the breakthrough in the 34th minute.
Kadir sent a sweet cross to Remi Gomis, whose header beat Jourdren but came back off the post.
Just a minute after the break Valenciennes went ahead. David Ducourtioux drilled in a fierce shot from 30 yards which Jourdren failed to deal with properly and Kadir followed up and slotted the ball into the empty goal.
Kadir then forced Jourdren into a save at full stretch before Vincent Aboubakar volleyed just over as Valenciennes continued to attack.
However, Penneteau was called on when Jamelle Saihi’s long-range shot was deflected by Gael Danic with the keeper deflecting the ball for a corner, from which Dernis’ powerful shot was well kept out by a reflex save.
The keeper then ensured his side would claim all three points when he kept out Utaka’s volley four minutes into injury time.