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French Ligue 1

Auguste Delaune 1st March 2014 - Kick off 19:00 Ref: S Ennjimi

Reims Reims vs Valenciennes Valenc'nes

Reims 3

N De Preville (21)
P Oniangue (38)
G Charbonnier (77)


Valenc'nes 1

J Placide (og 87)

Reims continue top-four push

Last Updated: 01/03/14 9:51pm

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Celebrations for Reims against Valenciennes

Celebrations for Reims against Valenciennes

Reims continued their push for a top-four finish and European football by beating relegation-threatened Valenciennes 3-1 in Ligue 1 on Saturday.

Goals from Nicolas de Preville, Prince Oniangue and Gaetan Charbonnier earned the home side their third win in four games as they closed the gap on fourth-placed Lille to four points.

Mathieu Dossevi's reply came too late for Valenciennes, who are third from bottom in the standings and five points from safety.

Reims have been something of a revelation so far this season and their confidence was on show after four minutes when Grzegorz Krychowiak's snap-shot drew a smart save from visiting goalkeeper Macedo Novaes.

They were in front after 20 minutes, though, thanks to De Preville, who was fed a pass in the area by Antoine Conte before planting a right-footed shot past Novaes.

De Preville threatened again minutes later but this time his effort was high of the mark, and Valenciennes responded soon after with a powerful volley from Tongo Doumbia which was dealt with at full stretch by home keeper Johnny Placide.

But Reims were able to extend their lead eight minutes before the interval when Oniangue tucked away on the rebound after Conte's initial strike was palmed away by Novaes.

Valenciennes showed greater purpose in the second half and Placide twice came to the rescue against Abdul Waris, who tried his luck with a header and a drive from distance.

Novaes was also called into action after 73 minutes by a strike from Odair Fortes, but the VA defence was breached again three minutes later by Charbonnier, who made the most of a precise pass from Fortes before firing low into the net.

Dossevi denied the home side a clean sheet with his goal three minutes from time, which was helped on its way by a fumble from Placide, but the damage had already been done.

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French Ligue 1

French Ligue 1
Pos Team P Pts
1 Lyon 22 48
2 Marseille 22 44
3 Paris St Germain 22 44
4 St Etienne 22 40
5 Monaco 22 39
6 Montpellier 22 35
7 Bordeaux 22 33
8 Nice 22 31
9 Nantes 22 31
10 Rennes 22 30
11 Reims 22 29
12 Guingamp 22 28
13 Lille 22 27
14 Bastia 22 23
15 Lorient 22 23
16 Evian Thonon Gaillar 22 23
17 Toulouse 22 22
18 Caen 22 21
19 RC Lens 22 20
20 Metz 22 20