Rennes win back-to-back games to rout Bastia in Ligue 1 battle
Romain Alessandrini set the hosts on their way with his fifth goal of the season on 14 minutes before Ola Toivonen added a second to tee up a ninth win this term for the Brittany side.
Jean Makoun’s first strike of the season just after the break completed a miserable afternoon for Frederic Hantz’s side who have now won just once in their past seven outings.
Phillipe Montanier’s side could have been a goal up inside 13 minutes but Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik saw his header hit the crossbar before referee Stephane Lannoy blew up for a foul.
However, just a minute later Alessandrini fired the hosts into the lead with his first goal of the year when visiting keeper Mickael Landreau made a hash of his powerful 25-yard effort to gift Rennes a reward for their impressive start.
Rennes continued to dominate their Corsican visitors and grabbed a deserved second just before the half-hour mark when Foued Kadir nodded a long ball into the path of Toivonen and the former PSV man saw his superb first-time half-volley nestle in the top corner with Landreau soundly beaten.
Despite that comfortable lead the hosts showed no signs of letting up and could have put the game to bed in time for half-time.
Firstly, Alessandrini saw his shot from the left miss the target despite having better options inside the area while Landreau made two superb saves inside a minute to keep out Toivonen’s point-blank header before the former Lille shot-stopper showed great reactions to deny Kadir.
The interval did nothing to stem the hosts’ constant flow of attacks and Landreau was called upon again to deny Kadir after the Algerian midfielder latched onto a Jean Makoun ball from deep.
The Bastia keeper was soon picking the ball out of the net again though when, just before the hour mark, Makoun played a clever one-two with the impressive Toivonen before beating Landreau from close range.
In a rare attack, Bastia almost gave themselves a glimmer of hope when Gianni Bruno found himself one-on-one with Benoit Costil following some good work from Wahbi Khazri but the young Belgian’s weak effort failed to trouble the under-worked Rennes keeper.
With time ticking away, the visitors wasted another opportunity when an unmarked Francois Modesto somehow managed to miss the target after getting on the end of Romaric N’Dri free-kick with five minutes left.