Three and easy for Nice
Last Updated: 14/04/13 4:10pm
Dario Cvitanich celebrates his goal for Nice
Nice leapfrogged Lyon and Lille to move up to fourth in Ligue 1 after a comfortable 3-0 victory over lowly Sochaux at the Stade du Ray.
Second-half goals from Mahamane Traore, Didier Digard and Dario Cvitanich were enough to secure the hosts a vital three points in their hunt for a Champions League place.
Defeat for Sochaux left them teetering precariously just above the bottom three with just six games left, while they have only one victory in their previous eight matches.
In a match largely dominated by the hosts, Nice did all the pressing in the opening stages with both Kevin Anin and Cvitanich going close to opening the scoring.
The hosts thought they had broken the deadlock in the 25th minute but Cvitanich's header from a Digard free-kick was ruled out for offside.
Sochaux offered a rare attack on the Nice goal shortly after with Sebastien Corchia picking out Giovanni Sio, whose effort was kept out by goalkeeper David Ospina.
The impressive Cvitanich went close again, this time being denied by Simon Pouplin in the Sochaux goal, before the hosts had a penalty shout turned down when Corchia appeared to handle the ball just before the break.
Nice came out with greater intent following the interval and got reward for their endeavour just six minutes into the second half.
Sochaux failed to clear a corner and Traore was on hand to turn Nemanja Pejcinovic's header beyond Pouplin in the visitors' goal.
The visitors failed to offer any response and Nice doubled their lead on the hour mark thanks to Digard's deflected shot - defender Loic Poujol's touch leaving Pouplin with little chance in the visitors' goal.
The points were all but wrapped up with seven minutes left to play when Cvitanich got the goal his performance deserved.
Substitute Fabrice Abriel was the creator and the Argentinian striker finished off the move to cleverly lift the ball over Pouplin for his 14th league goal this season.
French Ligue 1
|3||Paris St Germain||19||38|
|18||Evian Thonon Gaillar||18||19|