PARIS (AP) – Lille missed the chance to close the gap on second place after conceding a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw at Rennes on Sunday, and Marseille’s 16-game unbeaten run ended with a 1-0 loss at Brest that hampers its bid for a Champions League place.
Defending French champion Lille looked set for a third straight 1-0 win away from home after defender Aurelien Chedjou’s first-half goal, but striker Mevlut Erding volleyed home a looping pass from Jean Armel Kana-Biyik in the 90th minute.
Lille remains in third place, but its draw means it is six points behind PSG and seven behind leader Montpellier.
Central defender Paul Baysse put Brest ahead when he rose to head in a corner in the 17th minute, and Brest held on in injury time as winger Andre Ayew and right back Rod Fanni both came close to equalizing.
Marseille coach Didier Deschamps was angry that his team did not receive a penalty inside the first minute, when defender Johan Martial appeared to foul Brazilian striker Brandao.
“It was a penalty,” Martial conceded. “I don’t think I touched the ball when I went to challenge Brandao.”
Deschamps felt the incident weighed heavily on the outcome.
“We’re not hiding behind that, but after 30 seconds it was a penalty and a red card,” he said. “Everyone saw that foul, it doesn’t matter if the player admits it now … if the referee makes the right decision, it’s not the same game.”
Eighth-place Marseille is now seven points behind Lille, although it has a game in hand on the top seven teams.
“It’s our first defeat for three months and it’s very frustrating,” Marseille midfielder Alou Diarra said. “We weren’t talking about the title, but we were thinking about third place. To come away with nothing is a huge disappointment.
“Our chances of finishing third are diminishing,” Diarra said. “It’s hard to accept because we put the effort in.”
Toulouse moved sixth after beating last-place Sochaux 2-0. Defender Aymen Abdennour and striker Emmanuel Riviere scored a goal in each half.
On Saturday, Montpellier beat Bordeaux 1-0 and moved into first place, one point ahead of Paris Saint-Germain which needed an injury-time goal from Guillaume Hoarau to scrape a 4-4 draw at Lyon.
Brest’s goal came after center half Nicolas Nkoulou failed to clear the ball properly and it fell to Benoit Lesoimier, whose powerful shot was tipped away for a corner by goalkeeper Steve Mandanda. Baysse then timed his run perfectly to nod home from the corner.
Marseille came close to equalizing in the 31st when striker Brandao headed Jordan Ayew’s cross onto the post.
Brest goalkeeper Steeve Elana pushed Fanni’s shot from 20 yards onto the post in the 58th, and then got straight back up to save Benoit Cheyrou’s shot as the midfielder latched onto the rebound.
In the second minute of injury time, Elana pushed Andre Ayew’s downward header away for a corner. Elana then saved Fanni’s header and Eden Ben Basat cleared the ball off the line.
Toulouse took the lead in the ninth minute when Etienne Capoue flicked on Paulo Machado’s corner and Abdennour gave ‘keeper Pierrick Cros no chance from close range.
Cros was to blame for Toulouse’s second goal in the 55th. His poor clearance fell to Machado, and he fed the ball to Riviere, who kept his composure to lob the ball over Cros.
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