Matchday 10 - Saturday Review

Ligue 1 Conforama


Patrick Kluivert scores first Ligue 1 goal to give Claude Puel's Lille a 3-0 win over local rivals Valenciennes while PSG crash to another defeat at the Parc

Ligue 1, Matchday 10
Saturday, October 6, 2007

Lille 3
Kluivert (pen) 3, Lichtsteiner 39, Plestan 64

Valenciennes 0

Match Stats

Patrick Kluivert grabbed the first goal of his Ligue 1 career as Lille beat local rivals Valenciennes 3-0 with a dominant performance at Stade Metropole.

The Dutch striker converted the third-minute penalty that set Lille en route to their first victory in eight weeks and nobody could deny they totally deserved the points after outplaying the visitors.

They were helped by scoring so early and Kluivert will be delighted to have got off the mark. Valenciennes defender David Sommeil was adjudged to have pushed Lille striker Kevin Mirallas in the box and Kluivert make no mistake from the spot, sending Valenciennes goalkeeper Nicolas Penneteau the wrong way.

Mathieu Debuchy nearly doubled Lille's lead when he unleashed a fierce 20-yard drive, forcing a superb save from Penneteau. Mirallas then volleyed over the bar from close range as Lille controlled the game.

The hosts grabbed their second shortly before half-time thanks to a defensive error. Yohan Cabaye drilled a free-kick into the area from the left wing and defender Mody Traore failed to clear the ball properly. Stefan Lichtsteiner pounced to finish neatly from close range.

Lille nearly scored a spectacular third goal when Ludovic Obraniak, always a danger man from set-pieces, spotted goalkeeper Penneteau off his line and delivered an audacious 35-yard free-kick that struck the crossbar.

But Obraniak had a decisive impact when he played a central role in Lille's brilliantly-worked third. He peeled away from a defensive wall at a free-kick to collect a disguised pass from Cabaye and then Obraniak crossed into the box for Nicolas Plestan to head home.

Valenciennes were unable to forge any openings as Lille played out the last 20 minutes without any worries. Puel's side climb to 11th following this result while Valenciennes fall to fifth.

Paris S-G 1
Ceara 55

Rennes 3
Leroy 19, Briand 74, Wiltord 84

Match Stats

A goal and an assist from former playmaker Jerome Leroy condemned PSG to a third league defeat of the season as Rennes continued their impressive start to 2007-08.

Having failed to register a victory at the once-impregnable Parc Des Princes this season, it was no surprise that high-flying Rennes drew first blood against the Parisians. Painfully for the home crowd, it was former favourite Leroy who punished PSG with the deftest of finishes.

Skilfully slipped in by ex-Arsenal forward Sylvain Wiltord, Leroy drew out Mickael Landreau before lifting the ball expertly over him into the back of the net. It was a sumptuous finish that gave every indication as to why Rennes have lost just once since the opening day of the season. While Wiltord and Jimmy Briand battled away up front for Rennes, the few half-chances created by PSG came from the expert left foot of Jerome Rothen whose probing passes caused the visitors' defence some degree of discomfort.

Within moments of the restart it should have been 2-0. A hopeful through-ball should have been comfortably cleared by Zoumana Camara, but the defender let it slip under his foot, allowing Jimmy Briand a free run on Landreau's goal. The 'keeper did brilliantly, just getting enough on the low shot to stop it from going over the line.

Rennes were soon made to pay for such profligacy as PSG forced an equaliser. A deep cross into the box was nodded down by David Ngog and Brazilian right-back Ceara, playing only his second match for the club, lashed a right-foot shot past Luzi from the edge of the box.  But with 15 minutes remaining, Leroy made another telling contribution, supplying the killer ball that set Briand clear to glide past Landreau and this time clip the ball into the goal. PSG's misery was further compounded when Wiltord rounded off a swift counter attack with his first goal of the season in the closing minutes.

Lens 2
Pieroni 23 (pen), Mangane 78

Auxerre 0

Match Stats

Jean-Pierre Papin's Lens bounced back from last week's 3-0 defeat at Lyon with an emphatic win over hapless Auxerre at the Stade Felix Bollaert, with goals in either half propelling the home side up to 15th in the table.

With Lens having managed only one win all season and Auxerre losing all four of their away games, a draw seemed a likely outcome. But it was the home side who got their noses in front in the first half. A clumsy foul on the dangerous Olivier Monterrubio by Romanian defender Gabriel Tamas left the referee with little option but to point to the penalty spot. Belgian striker Luigi Pieroni, a summer signing from Nantes and former Auxerre player, stepped up to convert the spot kick and register his first goal of the season.

The home side might have doubled that advantage just moments later when striker Aruna Dindane powered in a header. The Ivorian's delight was, however, short-lived as a belated flag was raised for an offside. Midway through the second period, Papin's improving side almost paid the penalty as Auxerre forged their best opening of the match. Having been played in by captain Benoit Pedretti, Toifilou Maoulida skipped round the goalkeeper but somehow managed to strike his shot against the right-hand post with the goal gaping.

Minutes later the striker almost turned provider but his superb cross was missed by his Romanian strike partner Daniel Niculae who was unmarked at the back post. Such mistakes soon proved costly as the continually excellent Olivier Monterrubio played in Kader Mangane late on and the Senegalese midfielder neatly slipped the ball past the helpless Olivier Sorin in the Auxerre goal to secure the points.

Le Mans 2
De Melo 31, Matsui 61

Nice 0

Match Stats

An impressive win over a dogged Nice side lifted Le Mans to third in the table, level on points with champions Lyon and just three points behind leaders Nancy.

Nice arrived at the Stade Leon Bollee hoping to extend an excellent run of their own - just one defeat in six league matches - and knowing that victory would have lifted them to sixth place. But from the outset, it was clear that the home side was in charge, as Ivorian forward Gervinho tormented the Nice defence on numerous occasions.

The only surprise was that the goal took so long to arrive. When it did finally arrive, however, it was a brilliantly crafted effort that Nice could have done little to prevent. Gervinho ghosted past his defender, having been slipped in on the right-hand side by Stephane Sessegnon, and whipped a fiendish ball across the six-yard box that found Tulio De Melo. The Brazilian confidently clipped the ball past Hugo Lloris to open the scoring.

Midway through the second half, Gervinho was at it again, this time on the left where he flighted in a virtually indefensible cross with the outside of his right foot that a combination of Le Mans midfielder Daisuke Matsui and Nice defender Cedric Kante bundled into the net for 2-0. It might have been worse for Nice, but for some wasteful finishing and inspired goalkeeping. In the end, though, Le Mans were content to settle for a third consecutive win and an excellent performance.

Metz 1
Francois 59

Strasbourg 2
Mouloungui 43, Renteria 49

Match Stats

Strasbourg scored a vital away win against fellow promotees Metz in this battle of the east thanks to goals in either half from Eric Mouloungui and Brazilian striker Renteria.

The visitors were good value for the three points although Metz mounted a late comeback in an entertaining clash that nearly earned the hosts a point.

Francis De Taddeo's side paid the price for wasting early opportunities, with Daniel Gygax and Momar N'Diaye both having glorious chances to score. Gygax scuffed a shot with the goal at his mercy after rounding Strasbourg goalkeeper Stephane Cassard while 20-year-old striker N'Diaye failed to hit the target with a simple header five yards out.

Les Messins paid the price when Strasbourg went ahead two minutes before the break. It was a simple goal from a corner that sailed into the area and winger Mouloungui outjumped marker Sebastien Bassong to head home.

Midfielder Cedric Barbosa nearly equalised with a fierce 20-yard free-kick for Metz but Cassard palmed away and after the break Gygax again came close but was unable to beat Cassard, who produced one of the finest Ligue 1 goalkeeping performances of the season.

Shortly afterwards Strasbourg doubled their lead. Midfielder Pascal Johansen delivered a beautiful ball from the left on to the foot of centre-forward Renteria, who slotted home coolly from close range.

Metz gave themselves hope of getting something out of the game when Julien Francois pulled a goal back in spectacular style. The midfielder picked up the ball on the edge of the area and curled an unstoppable right-foot shot into the top corner.

Metz substitute Babacar Gueye had two chances to equalise but again Cassard was alert to the danger, making two more saves. Strasbourg were unable to increase their lead despite looking dangerous on the break, but coach Jean-Marc Furlan punched the air with delight on the final whistle as his side ended a run of four matches without a win and moved up to seventh place. The result leaves Metz bottom with five points from 10 games.

Lorient 0

Caen 0

Match Stats

It was honours shared in this encounter but Caen dominated the first-half and could feel aggrieved to go in at the break with the scores level. Yoan Gouffran and Lilian Compan both came close to opening the scoring with excellent chances as the visitors showed much greater energy and determination. They dominated in midfield, although Lorient did create a chance when Ulrich Le Pen - making his first appearance since recovering from a facial injury he suffered on the opening day of the season - crossed from the left but Rafik Saifi's header went wide of the net.

Lorient showed far more hunger in the second-half and almost scored immediately after the restart. Le Pen burst down the left after a brilliant through ball from substitute Oscar Ewolo and Le Open's cross found Marama Vahirua but the striker failed to hit the target. Just before the hour Vahirua returned the favour when he found Le Pen but the midfielder's left-foot shot flew just wide.

It looked as though Lorient would be on course for their first win in six matches but Caen managed to steady the ship and force their way back into the match. Substitute Anthony Deroin forced Lorient goalkeeper Fabien Audard into a spectacular save from 20 yards and late on the goalkeeper saved from another substitute, striker Stephane Mazure, to keep Lorient in the game.

In the end a point for both sides was probably fair although Lorient will be disappointed that their winless streak continues and Caen have failed to build on their tremendous 2-1 home win over Toulouse last week.

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