Cappone hands Toulouse reprieve

A disastrous error by Lorient goalkeeper Lionel Cappone allowed UEFA Champions League-chasing Toulouse to claim a 1-1 draw in their first division match. Toulouse were dumped out of the French Cup after losing 2-1 to second-tier side Guingamp in their mid-week semi-final and their bad luck appeared to be continuing when Andre Ayew put Lorient ahead in the 85th minute.

But Cappone let the ball squirm out of his hands after sliding out to the left-hand edge of his penalty area in the 89th minute, enabling Etienne Didot to square for Mauro Cetto to convert a simple equaliser for the home side. Toulouse remain fifth, four points off the last UEFA Champions League qualifying slot with five games remaining.

At the other end of the table, Vaclav Sverkos's injury-time penalty enabled Sochaux to claim a 1-1 draw at home to Valenciennes that moves them two places above the drop zone. Fallen giants St. Etienne remain in the bottom three after losing 3-1 at Nice, while there was heartbreak for second-bottom Caen, who conceded two late goals by Polish striker Ireneusz Jelen to lose 2-1 at Auxerre.

Elsewhere, Nancy beat Nantes 2-0 and Monaco won 1-0 at Le Mans, while rock-bottom Le Havre are 12 points from safety after going down 1-0 against Grenoble.

On 24 April, Lyon's bid for an eighth successive title was further compromised when they were held to a goalless draw at home to Paris Saint-Germain. The champions have now picked up just nine points from a possible 24 and are in serious danger of missing out on third place and a lucrative place in next season's Champions League.

"The match statistics don't look too good at the moment," said Lyon coach Claude Puel. "After the match we felt frustrated. We might win the fair play award at the end of the season, but that doesn't really suit me all that much."

PSG are one point behind Lyon in fourth, while league leaders Marseille can pull five points clear at the summit if they win at Lille in this evening's late game. Second-placed Bordeaux, who picked up their third League Cup title after out-classing second division side Vannes 4-0 at the Stade de France on25 April, travel to Rennes on 29 April.