Angers and Toko-Ekambi leave Lille in trouble
Karl Toko-Ekambi scored twice, including a dramatic 89th-minute winner, as Angers SCO moved out of the relegation zone with a 2-1 win over fellow strugglers LOSC Lille on Saturday.
LOSC 1-2 Angers SCO
With the hosts just above the bottom three and the visitors two places below them, little quarter was likely to be given. Angers, who had lost all three of their games in February, came closest to breaking the deadlock before the break.
Thomas Mangani's free-kick rattled the woodword and Ismaël Traoré might have scored from the follow-up (22'); the visiting captain probably should have found the net given he was all alone in front of Mike Maignan's unguarded goal.
Ibrahim Amadou had a promising shot blocked (38') but only former LOSC goalkeeper Ludovic Butelle denied the hosts the opening goal after the interval. Nicolas Pépé was the man thwarted by a superb stop (52').
Maignan would surely have been beaten at the opposite end had Thiago Maia not been in the way of a powerful Prince Oniangué header (67'); the LOSC 'keeper was picking the ball out of his net soon after when Karl Toko-Ekambi guided a header beyond him (72').
The Cameroon international's 12th league strike was cancelled out three minutes from time by Pépé as the former Angers man appeared to have given the hosts a lifeline.
But Toko Ekambi made it an unlucky 13 for the campaign as far as the hosts were concerned to snatch all three points that mean Stéphane Moulin's side are out of the bottom three on goal difference with Lille slipping to second-from-bottom of the table.
THE PLAYER: Karl Toko-Ekambi
Where would Angers be without their star forward? In significantly more trouble that they are, is the simple answer. His brace is undoubtedly his most valuable contribution yet.
THE STAT: 6
Moulin has never lost in six league games against Lille. This was his fourth win.