Rafael helps Lyon salvage draw against 10-man Monaco

Mario Pasalic scored Monaco's lone goal with a first-half header vs. Lyon on Friday night.  

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Rafael scored his first Lyon goal as Hubert Fournier’s side came from behind to rescue a late draw against 10-man Monaco.

The Brazil international moved to the Stade de Gerland from Manchester United in the summer and popped up with five minutes remaining as Lyon left the principality with a 1-1 draw. Mario Pasalic had opened the scoring for Monaco with a first-half header but Leonardo Jardim saw his side’s chances of picking up their first Ligue 1 home victory of the season take a hit when Wallace was sent off.

The hosts had started the game well and Pasalic came close to a seventh-minute opener but headed wide when he should have done better. Lacina Traore was the next man to come close for Monaco but the striker could not quite use his long frame to turn home Ivan Cavaleiro’s cross, with Thomas Lemar forcing a smart save out of Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes shortly afterwards.

With Lyon still on the back foot Bernardo Silva fired just wide before Pasalic finally made Monaco’s dominance pay by heading home Lemar’s corner – with Lopes culpable for not dealing with the set-piece. Monaco goalkeeper Danijel Subasic had been largely untested in the opening 45 minutes but was on hand to keep out Mathieu Valbuena’s free-kick before the break.

He was also equal to Alexandre Lacazette’s effort early on in the second half with Valbuena again forcing Subasic into a smart save on the hour mark. With Lyon chasing the game, Monaco had been dealing well with most attacks from the away side until Wallace was shown a straight red card with a little under 25 minutes remaining.

The Brazilian, on loan from Sporting Braga, was dismissed for a studs-up challenge on Lyon substitute Rachid Ghezzal to hand the initiative to the visitors. Lyon could not create many clear-cut openings as they pushed on in search of a positive result but they managed to take home a share of the spoils as Rafael beat the offside trap to calmly sweep home.

The draw leaves Monaco nine points adrift of leaders Paris Saint-Germain and down in 10th having played a game more than the defending champions, while Lyon move up to fifth ahead of the remainder of the weekend’s Ligue 1 action.