Marseille back in Europe's élite

published: Saturday, 19 May 2007, 20:06
Olympique de Marseille earned a UEFA Champions League place with a 2-1 win at AS Saint-Etienne as RC Lens and FC Girondins de Bordeaux both drew.
Olympique de Marseille secured a UEFA Champions League place next season with a 2-1 win at AS Saint-Etienne in Ligue 1 on Saturday.

Valbuena winner
Second-placed Marseille moved four points clear of RC Lens and FC Girondins de Bordeaux, who both drew, with one match left and are now certain to finish runners-up to qualify directly for European football's premier competition. Marseille, making amends after losing to FC Sochaux-Montbéliard on penalties in the French Cup final last weekend, took the points with a late goal from substitute midfielder Matthieu Valbuena. France forward Djibril Cisse fired into the top corner with an angled shot from the edge of the area to put the visitors ahead on 53 minutes but midfielder Pascal Feindouno equalised for the home side with a similar goal 16 minutes later.

Valbuena winner
Third-placed Lens were held to a 0-0 home draw by strugglers OGC Nice while Bordeaux, who stay fourth on goal difference, drew 1-1 at Le Mans UC 72, who took the lead through Stéphane Sessègnon midway though the second half before Edixon Perea (71) equalised. Marseille moved on to 61 points from 37 games, 17 behind leaders Olympique Lyonnais, who have already secured a sixth consecutive title but who lost 1-0 against AS Monaco FC.

High-scoring matches
Stade Rennais FC are in fifth place after a convincing 4-1 win against FC Lorient. Oscar Ewolo (26) cancelled out Mario Melchiot’s second-minute opener but the hosts then took the match beyond reach with further goals by Bruno Cheyrou (51) John Utaka (77) and Cyril Jeunechamp (78). There were even more goals in the match between AS Nancy-Lorraine and Sochaux. Marc-Antoine Fortuné (20, 79), Sébastien Puygrenier (32) Benjamin Gavanon (67) and David Sauget (90) all scored for the hosts who conceded Valter Brsa’s goal on stroke of half-time and Moumouni’s 89th-minute consolation.

PSG success
Elsewhere, Paris Saint-Germain FC and AJ Auxerre both completed 2-1 victories against ES Troyes Aube Champagne and LOSC Lille Métropole while CS Sedan-Ardennes were held to a 1-1 draw by Valenciennes FC and FC Nantes Atlantique fought out a goalless draw with Toulouse FC.

Related information

Club profiles

Member associations