Montpellier mount pressure on PSG
Montpellier kept the heat on Paris Saint-Germain at the top of the Ligue 1 table with a 3-0 victory over Caen tonight.
Karim Ait Fana opened the scoring early in the second half and goals late on from Souleymane Camara and Olivier Giroud, with a penalty, sealed the win. The victory kept the hosts just one point behind PSG, who needed a 90th-minute winner to see off struggling Dijon earlier today.
Caen had the first sight of goal in the eighth minute when Livio Nabab got to the byline down the right and pulled the ball back for Pierre-Alain Frau, who curled his shot against the outside of the post. At the other end, Giroud's header was deflected behind for a corner before Caen had a huge let-off in the 18th minute.
Remy Cabella's free-kick crashed back off the bar and, moments later, John Utaka dribbled into the area and brought a brilliant point-blank save out of goalkeeper Alexis Thebaux. The hosts were well on top, but Frau had another effort from the edge of the area which did not have enough curl to come back inside the post and went just wide.
But Thebaux kept his side on level terms again a minute before half-time when, wrong-footed, he saved Cabella's shot with his foot. Cabella then fired just over from Utaka's cross following brilliant play between the two players before Montpellier took a deserved lead in the 51st minute.
Marco Estrada's long-range shot hit the bar, but the ball came to Henri Bedimo, who crossed from the left and, after Giroud's header was saved, Ait Fana poked home the rebound. Thebaux was having a very busy night and he pushed Estrada's free-kick on to the bar before producing an even better stop to deny Cabella. The keeper stuck out his right foot to keep out the striker's close-range effort when a goal seemed certain.
A second Montpellier goal was coming, though, and it arrived in the 83rd minute when Aurelien Montaroup hesitated on the ball and Camara stole it off him and scored with a calm finish. And Giroud completed the scoring in the last minute, converting a penalty low into the net after Nabab brought down Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.