Karl Toko Ekambi scored in the final minute to cancel out Ibrahima Sissoko's first-half opener as Olympique Lyonnais battled back to draw 1-1 with RC Strasbourg Alsace at the Stade de la Meinau.
RC Strasbourg Alsace 1-1 Olympique Lyonnais
Peter Bosz made seven changes from the Lyon side which drew 1-1 with West Ham in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday, with Houssem Aouar - one of the few survivors from midweek - taking up a deeper role in central midfield. That didn't stop him from stinging Matz Sels' gloves early on, the Strasbourg 'keeper showing great reflexes (6'). Le Racing soon settled into their stride, though, and Ludovic Ajorque sent a fine ball across the face of the goal which only needed a toe on it to make it 1-0 (15'). That chance went begging, but the next one was converted. Dimitri Liénard did well to nip a Lyon attack in the bud with a lofted ball forward in the same motion, and while Sissoko didn't look favourite to latch onto Ajorque's knock-down, Anthony Lopes and his defence seemed to think each other were dealing with it, and the midfielder stole in for his second goal of the season (20'). Moussa Dembélé, attempting a header, then kneed Léo Dubois' cross onto the home crossbar (28'). Lopes had been injured in conceding the opener, and Jan Pollersbeck replaced him soon after (30'). The German made a save from Anthony Caci (43') and it was 1-0 at the break.
Lyon level late on
Both sides were unchanged at the interval, but Lyon must have had their Bosz's words ringing in their ears as they started the second half much more brightly. Tanguy Ndombélé found Jason Denayer with a cross into the box but the big centre-back sent a header straight into Sels (57'). Strasbourg found their second wind around the hour mark, though, with Liénard making a late break into the box and volleying a Sissoko cross narrowly over the bar (59'). Damien Da Silva then headed a Romain Faivre corner wide of the back post as Lyon tried to mount a comeback (68'), but Strasbourg never looked too worried. Jean-Ricner Bellegarde was unlucky to see a shot sail past Pollersbeck's top corner (71') and Kévin Gameiro should perhaps have done better than to thump a shot into Denayer soon after (77'). Gameiro, having been played in by Ajorque, saw another shot saved by Pollersberk (85') and that profligacy was ultimately punished. Minutes after Lucas Paqueta blazed wide, (88') Toko Ekambi poked home a Dubois cross (90') and it ended 1-1.
THE PLAYER: Dimitri Liénard
Now 34, Strasbourg captain Liénard could perhaps be forgiven for grudging playing as a wing-back this deep into his career, but the midfielder-by-trade put in a superlative display on the left-hand side of Julien Stéphan's 5-3-2, snuffing out danger at one end whilst providing a constant attacking threat at the other. Nobody was more unlucky not to find himself on the winning side.
THE STAT: 9
Strasbourg remain undefeated in their last nine Ligue 1 Uber Eats matches, a run stretching back to Round 22 when they were edged 4-3 in a thriller at Girondins de Bordeaux. With AS Monaco, OGC Nice and now Lyon scalps claimed this term, le Racing - who have cemented their grip on fourth - would be thoroughly deserving of a second European campaign in four seasons.