After a successful CAF Africa Cup of Nations on and off the pitch, co-hosts Gabon and Equatorial Guinea have soared up the FIFA/Coca Cola World Ranking.
Paris Saint-Germain have moved one point above Montpellier at the top of Ligue 1 despite a lacklustre performance at relegation-threatened Nice.
Seydou Keita scored the winning spot-kick as Mali progressed to the CAF Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals by knocking out co-hosts Gabon on penalties following a 1-1 draw after extra time.
An incredible Ligue 1 encounter ended with Lille and Nice drawing 4-4, after Francois Clerc scored a stoppage-time equaliser to earn a crucial and unlikely point for the ten-man visitors.
Dennis Oliech and Ben Sahar combined brilliantly to earn Auxerre a precious 2-1 victory at home to Nice, lifting their side clear of the Ligue 1 relegation zone while worsening the visitors' plight.
Montpellier kept up the pressure on Paris Saint-Germain at the Ligue 1 summit with a 1-0 win over Marseille, while Saint-Etienne capitalised on a dismal night for eight-man Nice to secure a 2-0 victory.