Select a Team

French Ligue 1

Stade Nungesser (ATT 14,308) 23rd December 2012 - Kick off 13:00 Ref: Nicolas Rainville

Valenc'nes Valenciennes vs Evian Thonon Gaillar Evian

Valenc'nes 2

G Pujol (14)
J Saez (74)

ft

Evian 1

S Khelifa (33)
D Kone (S/O 72)

Valenciennes edge out Evian

Last Updated: 23/12/12 3:58pm

  • Share:
Gregory Pujol is mobbed after scoring

Gregory Pujol is mobbed after scoring

Valenciennes ended an encouraging first half to the Ligue 1 season on a high note with a hard-fought 2-1 win over 10-man Evian.

Goals from Gregory Pujol and Jose Saez saw the hosts to a victory that means they will spend the winter break inside the top seven.

Saber Khelifa equalised for Evian in the first half but they had no response to Valenciennes' second goal, which came just moments after the visitors had lost Djakaridja Kone to a 71st-minute red card.

VA's Mathieu Dossevi also missed a second-half penalty.

The mood was good in the home camp ahead of kick-off after coach Daniel Sanchez agreed a one-year contract extension in the week, but it was the relegation-battling visitors who threatened first, Olivier Sorlin's free-kick bringing a good save from Nicolas Penneteau.

Valenciennes replied with a dangerous attack in the eighth minute, Dossevi whipping a cross in from the right for Pujol to attempt a sublime back-heel which forced Bertrand Laquait to turn the ball to safety.

The hosts took the lead in the 14th minute after Rudy Mater lofted a cross into the area and Pujol benefited from some poor defending by Aldo Angoula to slot home.

With 31 minutes gone Pujol went down in the area under challenge from Angoula but the referee was unmoved.

A minute later Evian were level, the goal coming against the run of play as Yannick Sagbo played in Khelifa who dispatched a superb right-footed shot beyond Penneteau.

Three minutes into the second half the hosts had a chance to restore their lead when Opa Nguette was brought down by Brice Dja Djedje in the area only for Dossevi to screw the resulting penalty wide of the left post.

Evian's hopes of snatching an unlikely win took a nosedive when Kone left Nguette in a heap on the floor after a nasty looking challenge and he was shown a straight red.

And within two minutes the hosts profited as Anthony Le Tallec knocked down a long pass into the path of Saez, who took a touch before firing home from 18 yards.

There was almost late drama when VA's Nicolas Isimat-Mirin appeared to handle in the area, but the referee waved play on in the face of desperate Evian pleas for a penalty.

  • Share:

Matches

Table

French Ligue 1

French Ligue 1
Pos Team P Pts
1 Marseille 19 41
2 Lyon 19 39
3 Paris St Germain 19 38
4 St Etienne 19 36
5 Monaco 19 32
6 Bordeaux 19 31
7 Nantes 19 30
8 Rennes 19 28
9 Reims 19 28
10 Montpellier 19 26
11 Nice 19 22
12 Guingamp 19 22
13 Lille 18 21
14 Toulouse 19 21
15 Lorient 19 20
16 RC Lens 19 19
17 Metz 19 19
18 Evian Thonon Gaillar 18 19
19 Bastia 19 18
20 Caen 19 15