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French Ligue 1

Stade de la Mosson 15th December 2012 - Kick off 19:00

Montpellier Montpellier vs Bastia Bastia

Montpellier 4

M Estrada (14)
E Herrera (48)
Y Belhanda (60)
A Mounier (76)

ft

Bastia 0

Montpellier click into gear

Last Updated: 15/12/12 9:36pm

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Anthony Mounier (r): Rounded off the scoring

Anthony Mounier (r): Rounded off the scoring

Champions Montpellier moved into the top half of the Ligue 1 table for the first time this season as they secured a third consecutive win at home to Bastia.

After Marco Estrada's sensational 14th-minute opener, second-half goals from Emanuel Herrera, Younes Belhanda and Anthony Mounier ensured the recent resurgence of Rene Girard's side has now started to gather real momentum.

The 4-0 scoreline was Montpellier's biggest win of the season - beating the 3-0 success over Ajaccio only last weekend - as their disastrous start has started to fade from memory.

Montpellier have now lost just once in eight league games - 1-0 away to leaders Lyon - and can attack the second half of the campaign without the distraction of European football following their Champions League group stage exit.

They were completely dominant and Estrada had fired a long-range shot narrowly over before opening the scoring in spectacular style.

John Utaka lost the ball after clever work from Bryan Dabo but a hasty clearance fell only as far as Estrada, who launched a fiercely-struck volley from 30 yards into the top corner.

Bastia goalkeeper Landry Bonnefoi prevented any further damage before half-time with superb saves to deny Herrera and Utaka, but the floodgates opened upon the resumption.

Herrera was left with the simplest of tasks of scoring on 47 minutes when Utaka skinned Gael Angoula down the left and sent in a pin-point cross.

Belhanda grabbed his second goal in three games on the hour when he raced onto Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa's though-ball and powerfully picked his spot.

Bonnefoi deflected over another well-hit Herrera drive but Montpellier had another goal in them and substitute Mounier delivered it 15 minutes from the end.

Again it was a memorable strike as Belhanda's free-kick fell to Mounier, who athletically smacked a volley past Bonnefoi at his near post.

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Matches

Table

French Ligue 1

French Ligue 1
Pos Team P Pts
1 Paris St Germain 14 30
2 Marseille 13 28
3 Lyon 14 27
4 Bordeaux 13 24
5 Nantes 13 23
6 Rennes 14 22
7 St Etienne 13 22
8 Monaco 14 20
9 Reims 14 19
10 Nice 14 18
11 Metz 14 18
12 Toulouse 13 17
13 Montpellier 13 17
14 Lille 13 16
15 Bastia 14 14
16 Caen 14 13
17 Lorient 14 13
18 Evian Thonon Gaillar 13 13
19 Guingamp 14 12
20 RC Lens 14 11