Saturday’s Ligue 1 Review

OFRTP-FOOTBALL-L1-20091003After Saturday’s games, the Ligue 1 table looks quite different than it has most of the season.

The most noticable change was at the top of the chart as Bordeaux lost their top spot to Olympique Lyonnais. Bordeaux, mostly playing their B team, lost 3-1 against a St. Etienne team that needed this win to get their season back on track. Les Verts started with a 2-0 lead with goals by Frenandez Augusto and Ilan. St. Etienne dominated most of the first half.

With St. Etienne continuing their dominance in the second half, Bordeaux manager Laurent Blanc decided to bring in the big guns with the addition of Marouane Chamakh and Fernando Cavenaghi in the 56th minute and Wendel in the 74th minute. Bordeaux found some light with a goal by Juisse in the 68th minute. But they were not able to find their grove toward the end of the game, and a stoppage time goal by Dimitri Payet sealed the deal for Les Verts.

Later in the day Lyon travelled to the hostile environment of Lens and came away with three points. Both teams had a chance to win this game, but Lyon came out on top with goals by Sidney Govou and Kim Kallstrom. This was Govou’s first start of the year in Ligue 1 and his first goal of the season as well.

Valencienne looked as if they could keep up their recent form as they took a 2-0 lead away at Nice. After last week’s win against Marseille, Valencienne looked like they could wreak havoc on the top teams by moving further up the table. But two Nice goals by Ben Saada (67) and Olivier Echouanfi (73) put Valencienne on their heals. The final nail in the coffin came with an own goal by Valencienne forward Mamadou Samassa, giving Nice the 3-2 win at home.

Montpellier continued their presence near the top of the table with a win against Grenoble, who continues the season without a single point. Montpellier opened the scoring in the 3rd minute with a strike from forward Victor Hugo Montano. They added two more goals, both from defender Nenad Dzodic, who has three goals on the year. Grenoble would score two goals, but that is the closest they would get as Montpellier hold on for a 3-2 win.

After a disappointing lost to Bordeaux last week, Rennes was looking to get back on track at home against an Auxerre that seems to be improving in the last few matches. Starting the season in last place and with no goals, Auxerre have climbed their way up to a midtable position. Rennes, on the other hand, suffered their first defeat of the season last week.

Things would continue to get worse for Rennes. American Carlos Bocanegra was red-carded after dragging down a breaking Dennis Oliech. The ensuing free kick lead to an Auxerre goal by Benoit Pedretti. But Rennes continued to pressure, even with a man down. But this would be the only goal of the match, leading to an Auxerre victory.

Paris St-Germain and Nancy were the only teams that played to a draw yesterday. Both teams really needed to get a win, but it was not to be in the cards for either. In classic PSG form, the side from Paris is starting to show a slowing down after a great start to the season. Even with the draw at home, PSG moved up in the standings as a result of the Rennes loss. Nancy gained a spot at well, but moved ahead of Lorient, who do not play until Sunday afternoon against Toulouse.