RC Lens missed out of the opportunity to claim top spot in the Ligue 1 Uber Eats table but remain unbeaten this season following Sunday's goalless draw at FC Nantes.
FC Nantes 0-0 RC Lens
Lens travelled to Nantes knowing that victory could lift them to the top of the league table, for a matter of hours at least, with Paris Saint-Germain not in action until Sunday's late kick-off. Nantes started the brighter of the two sides, though, and Mostafa Mohamed was a matter of inches away from his third goal of the season when he fired past Brice Samba's post (8'). Lens soon picked up the pace, though, and Jimmy Cabot forced a good save from Samba's opposite number, Alban Lafont, with a half-volley (17'). Cabot nearly turned maker midway through the half when he teed up David Costa, but the Portuguese also saw his shot saved by the imperious Lafont (33'), and Willy Delajod's whistle for half-time went with the deadlock intact.
Nantes began the day teetering above the relegation places, but they gave as good as they got after the restart, and Ludovic Blas came close to opening the scoring after Moses Simon found him unmarked in the box, but Samba pulled off a brilliant stop to deny him (66'). Simon was wreaking havoc down the left and another dangerous ball into the box intended for former Lens man Ignatius Ganago was cleared at the last by Massadio Haïdara (83'). Nantes, in their matching 3-4-3, ran themselves into the ground for the final spurt, and did well to earn a 0-0 draw and just their second clean sheet of the season.
THE PLAYER: Brice Samba
Florian Sotoca and Seko Fofana have been winning many of the plaudits for Lens this season, but Samba's contribution simply shouldn't be overlooked here. Les Sang et Or may have been favourites coming into the game, but that they left with a share of the points was thanks in no small part to the Congolese, he faced 10 shots on his goal all told.
THE STAT: 12
This was the first time in 12 meetings that this fixture has ended goalless. You have to go all the way back to April 2007 for the last time Nantes and Lens drew 0-0. A certain Fabien Barthez was playing in goal for les Canaris that day.