Diallo and Metz end Nantes winning run
FC Metz moved off the bottom of the Ligue 1 Conforama table after a late Habib Diallo goal gave them a 1-0 win over in-form FC Nantes at the Stade Saint-Symphorien on Saturday.
FC Metz 1 - 0 FC Nantes
This encounter looked set to end in a goalless draw until Metz struck in the 87th minute when a low ball into the box from the right by Farid Boulaya evaded the reach of Andrei Girotto and was turned into the net from close range by Diallo.
It is a welcome return to winning ways for Metz, who have now taken seven points from their last four outings after a slow start on their return to the top flight. They are off the bottom of the table and move above Olympique Lyonnais, who they face next weekend.
Wagué sent off
Nantes had come into this game in second place on the back of three straight 1-0 wins, and six wins in their previous seven matches. However, Les Canaris had been handicapped here by numerous absences, with Fabio, Nicolas Pallois, Charles Traoré and Imran Louza all ruled out either due to suspension or injury.
Their hopes of keeping their winning run going were severely hit when they were reduced to 10 men just after the hour mark as Molla Wagué - starting in a makeshift defence - was shown a straight red card for catching Diallo on the edge of the area as the Metz player sought to get on the end of a long ball forward.
Kévin N’Doram had hit the post for the home side just before that pivotal moment in the game, and Metz got their reward late on, denying Nantes goalkeeper Alban Lafont a fourth consecutive clean sheet.
THE PLAYER: Habib Diallo
The Senegalese striker again made the différence here for Metz with his seventh goal of the campaign - out of his team's total of nine. He also provoked the second-half sending-off of Wagué that cleared the path for the hosts to go on and win the game.
THE STAT: 9
Like Metz, Nantes have scored just nine Ligue 1 Conforama goals this season, and yet they remain in second place in the table after this result.