x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Dominant Lyon extend their lead

Lyon moved six points clear at the top of the table with a 2-0 win at Nancy as their rivals stalled on Saturday.

Lyon moved six points clear at the top of the table with a 2-0 win at Nancy as their rivals stalled on Saturday. The seven-times champions Lyon have 52 points from 25 games, but made hard work of seeing off Nancy. They went ahead after 19 minutes when the Brazilian defender Cris headed home from a Cesar Delgado corner. Lyon sat on the advantage and survived a penalty scare six minutes into the second half when goalkeeper Hugo Lloris parried Youssouf Hadji's spot-kick after Lamine Gassama had fouled Jonathan Brison.

In the last minute, Karim Benzema sealed the triumph with a fine finish. Lyon extended their lead over second-placed Paris St Germain, who were held to a 0-0 draw at Grenoble, with Toulouse in third seven points adrift after a goalless draw at home to Valenciennes. PSG dominated throughout at the Stade des Alpes, but Stephane Sessegnon, Ludovic Giuly and Guillaume Hoarau proved too clumsy in the area, just like Toulouse striker Andre-Pierre Gignac, the top scorer in Ligue 1, who was guilty of wasting his side's best chances against Valenciennes.

Stade Rennes stayed in the race for a Champions League berth with a 1-0 win at Nice. Midfielder Olivier Thomert met a Jimmy Briand cross in the box to score in the 67th minute. Rennes are sixth, three points behind Toulouse, who occupy the last Champions League qualifying spot. Relegation is looming for bottom club Le Havre, who lost 2-1 at home to AJ Auxerre and, with 15 points, they are 10 from safety with 13 matches remaining.

* Reuters