Nantes record biggest league win under Ranieri
Emiliano Sala was among the scorers as FC Nantes secured a welcome 3-0 win away to EA Guingamp on Saturday that allowed Claudio Ranieri's side to strengthen their hold on fifth place.
EA Guingamp 0 - 3 FC Nantes
Nantes were still looking for their first Ligue 1 Conforama win of 2018 but there was little sign of either side finding the breakthrough at the Stade Municipal du Roudourou before Ranieri sent on Alexander Kacaniklic in place of Yacine Bammou 10 minutes into the second half.
The Swedish international played a key role as Nantes went in front shortly after. He kept in a Léo Dubois pass and his cutback from the byline was left by Sala, allowing Adrien Thomasson to sweep home his third league goal of the campaign (61').
With Guingamp pushing forward in search of an equaliser, Sala should have put the game to bed when he found himself through on goal. However, Karl-Johan Johnsson got something in the way of his powerful strike and helped the ball strike the bar on its way over (83').
Sala was not to be denied though - Moustapha Diallo gave away a penalty when he tried a headed clearance only for the ball to strike his outstretched arm, and Sala smashed home the spot-kick before heading off to celebrate with the travelling supporters (86').
Nantes were not finished there, substitute Santy Ngom beating Johnsson with an excellent finish low into the far corner for his first Ligue 1 Conforama goal to seal the win (90+3').
That completed an excellent evening for Nantes, their first league win under Ranieri by a margin of more than one goal coming on a weekend in which rivals such as OGC Nice and Stade Rennais FC both lost.
THE PLAYER: Santy Ngom
Ngom's story is remarkable. He came to Nantes' attention last season when banging in the goals to help little La Suze win promotion to the amateur fifth tier. Les Canaris signed him to play for their reserves, but his performances caught the attention of Ranieri and his staff. Ngom had already appeared in seven Ligue 1 Conforama games before this one, even making three starts. And here the 24-year-old came off the bench to get his first goal at this level.
THE STAT: 20
Emiliano Sala has now scored 20 league goals for Nantes since the beginning of last season, almost a third of the team's total of 62 in that time.