Samuel Kalu's lone strike was enough for Bordeaux to avenge Sunday's Coupe de France loss to Domino's Ligue 2 side Le Have and clinch a place in the Coupe de la Ligue semi-finals along with Strasbourg, Monaco and Guingamp.
Wednesday, 9 January 2019
Coupe de la Ligue, quarter-finals
MATMUT Atlantique, Bordeaux
Girondins de Bordeaux 1 - 0 Havre AC
Just four days after seeing Le Havre pinch a 1-0 win to eliminate them from the Coupe de France, Bordeaux hit back with a win by the same scoreline - thanks to Samuel Kalu's sensational strike - to take revenge and make their way into the competition's last four.
Just like on Sunday, Bordeaux dominated possession and had the better chances in the first half - through Youssouf Sabaly (24') and Yann Karamoh (28', 30') - but Le Havre didn't seem too worried. 'Keeper Arnaud Balijon was in fine form, having dived smartly to turn Karamoh's second effort wide and he kept at it in the second, snaffling up Andreas Cornelius's rather straightforward shot (58').
Kalu makes the difference
However, there was little Balijon could do when recently capped Nigeria international Kalu broken the left and latched onto substitute Jimmy Briand's through-pass before curling his 20-metre effort past a stranded 'keeper and in at the far post (71').
The goal only saw Bordeaux grow in confidence and, as the lively Karamoh threatened two more times (84', 87'), hold out for a place in the Coupe de la Ligue semi-finals for the third time in as many seasons.
THE PLAYER: Jimmy Briand
Although the former Rennes, Lyon and Guingamp forward was kept out of the starting line-up by Valentin Vada, he was handed the keys to Bordeaux attacking play in the 62nd minute and, less than ten minutes later, he had produced the assist for Kalu's winner. All four of Briand's Ligue 1 Conforama goals so far this have helped secure points (three draws, including against Paris Saint-Germain in Week 15, and one win), and although Wednesday night saw him provide his first assist for the season, it nonetheless underlined his importance in Bédouet's squad.
THE STAT: 14
It has been a full 14 years since Bordeaux were last eliminated form the Coupe de la Ligue by lower-league opposition. The last time it happened was all the way back in season 2004-05, when Dijon, then playing in Domino's Ligue 2, beat them 2-1 with a last-gasp strike at the end of extra time.