Stalemate is not ideal
Last Updated: 04/05/13 9:34pm
Aissa Mandi and Reims celebrate their leveller
Reims and Ajaccio both missed the chance to pull further away from the Ligue 1 relegation zone after they played out a 1-1 draw at the Stade Auguste Delaune II.
Adrian Mutu scored the opening goal for Ajaccio in the 25th minute but the scores were level at half-time, which is how they remained, thanks to Aissa Mandi's headed equaliser.
The result leaves both sides with 39 points, five clear of 18th-placed Evian who dropped into the bottom three following their 1-0 defeat to fellow strugglers Troyes.
Reims had the majority of the chances throughout the game and Ajaccio have goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa to thank for their point after he made a series of saves to keep the home side at bay.
The Mexico international saved Antoine Devaux's sharp strike in the opening minutes before he denied Anthony Weber's 25-yard effort.
Ajaccio then claimed the lead through Mutu. Yohan Cavalli passed to Dennis Oliech on the left, who beat Reims defender Michael Tacalfred and crossed the ball into the area. Goalkeeper Kossi Agassa punched the ball clear but it fell to Mutu, who slid it in the net.
The lead was relatively short-lived, as Reims were back level in the 37th minute thanks to Mandi.
The defender moved upfield for Pape N'Diaye Souare's corner and was in the right place at the right time from Felipe Saad's clearance to fire in with a killer header from the penalty spot.
Reims looked to have regrouped during half time and came out firing after the break.
First Grzegorz Krychowiak tested Ochoa before the Mexican denied Weber and the crossbar came to his aid when Nicolas de Roussel de Preville's strike rattled the woodwork with nine minutes remaining.
Ajaccio had the final chance of the match through Sigamary Diarra, who beat Tacalfred and forced a good save from Agassa in the last minute, but it was not enough as both sides claimed a point.
French Ligue 1
Sat 4th May
Marseille2 - 1Bastia
Troyes1 - 0Evian
Sochaux1 - 0Lorient
Montpellier2 - 1Brest
Reims1 - 1AC Ajaccio
Toulouse4 - 2Lille
French Ligue 1
|6||Paris St Germain||3||5|
|20||Evian Thonon Gaillar||3||1|