Marseille claim opening day win
Title favourites Marseille got off to a winning start in the new campaign on a night deposed champions Lyon snatched a draw at Le Mans thanks to a late equaliser by debutant Lisandro Lopez. Marseille won 2-0 at Grenoble on goals from Mamadou Niang and Benoit Cheyrou at the Stade des Alpes, allowing Didier Deschamps to celebrate three points in his first competitive match as coach of the Mediterranean side.
With reigning champions Bordeaux opening their title defence on Sunday, Marseille were able to steal a march on their rivals, but Lyon were not so fortunate. Les Gones, whose seven-year dominance of the championship was ended by Les Girondins last season, needed a last-gasp free-kick by Lopez, a €24m summer signing from Porto, to rescue a point from a 2-2 draw.
They fell behind when Modibo Maiga broke the deadlock after 20 minutes, but were level at the break thanks to Mathieu Bodmer's equaliser from 20 yards. Mathieu Coutadeur restored Les Manceaux's lead just before the hour mark, but they were to be denied all three points by Argentinian Lopez.
Out in front
Rennes are the early pacesetters in the top flight as a result of their 3-0 win over promoted Boulogne-sur-Mer. Ismael Bangoura and Kader Mangane scored first-half goals and veteran Jerome Leroy added gloss with a late third. The Brittany club are joined on three points by Nancy, Nice, Sochaux and Monaco.
Nancy came from a goal down to win 3-1 at Valenciennes, who had gone ahead through recent loan signing Mamadou Samassa. The visitors fought back in style, with Floyd Ayite, Jonathan Brison and Bakaye Traore hitting the target as Valenciennes imploded, goalkeeper Nicolas Penneteau seeing red for the northerners late on.
Nice were comfortable 2-0 winners at St Etienne as Mahame Traore opened the scoring in the 39th minute and Loic Remy doubled the advantage with two minutes left. Vaclav Sverkos' first-half strike earned Sochaux a 1-0 win at Auxerre and Nene scored the only goal, in the 44th minute, to give Monaco a home victory over Toulouse by the same scoreline. The principality club had to play the last 16 minutes with ten men after Diego Perez was given his marching orders.
Elsewhere, Paris Saint-Germain squandered two points when they conceded an equaliser in stoppage time at promoted Montpellier. Ludovic Giuly put PSG ahead 19 minutes from time, but the hosts, who had Cyril Jeunechamp sent off in the first half, were saved by Emir Spahic as his late header secured a 1-1 draw.
Bordeaux play Lens at home on Sunday with the other match being Lorient's trip to Lille.