Paris, May 13: Lyon failed to secure a top-three finish in the Ligue 1 football championship as they conceded two late goals in a 2-3 loss to Strasbourg, while champions Paris Saint-Germain had to swallow their first home defeat in 42 league matches, falling 0-2 to Rennes in the penultimate round.
Lyon on Saturday seemed to be the winning side until the 88th minute, when Nuno Da Costa headed home an equaliser, before Dimitri Lienard’s free-kick went into the top corner of the net deep in stoppage time, reports Xinhua news agency.
Lyon centre back Mouctar Diakhaby made a disastrous error on 22 minutes, as he played the ball in Stephane Bahoken’s way, and the Strasbourg forward finished it between Mathieu Gorgelin’s legs. The hosts almost doubled their advantage in the 31st minute, but Benjamin Corgnet’s overhead kick just struck the crossbar.
Lyon players, striving for automatic qualification to next season’s Champions League group stage, regrouped themselves after the restart. Nabil Fekir converted a penalty that he won by himself in the 50th minute, before Houssem Aouar moved them in front in the 73rd.
However, the visitors did not hold off until the final whistle, and had to see their second position taken up by Monaco, who edged Saint-Etienne 1-0 after Fabinho’s injury-time spot kick.
Monaco were two points ahead of Lyon, with fourth-placed Marseille one point further behind. The Champions League group stage and playoff participants will be decided through next Saturday’s final round matches.
It was a night to celebrate for Strasbourg fans, though, as the team maintained their top-flight status after snapping Lyon’s eight-match winning run in the league.
PSG, who regained the throne with five rounds to spare, were poured cold water prior to their trophy-lifting ceremony at the Parc des Princes.
In the final home match of his career, PSG’s Italian veteran midfielder Thiago Motta conceded a penalty, and Benjamin Bourigeaud didn’t waste the chance to break the deadlock. Rennes were put two goals up by Adam Hunou on a counter-attack in the 71st minute.
Lille also remained in Ligue 1 following a 2-1 home victory over Dijon.
It was, however, uncertain about the second relegated team after Metz with just one match remaining. Troyes earned one point after tying Montpellier 1-1, but they were still the most threatened team to be relegated, second from bottom with 33 points.
Troyes were one point adrift Toulouse, who lost to Bordeaux 4-2. Despite a 4-1 loss to Nice, Caen managed to keep a three-point advantage over Toulouse above the relegation zone.
Also on Saturday, Amiens beat Metz 2-0, and Angers lost to Nantes 2-0. (IANS)