Monaco rallies from 2-0 down and a red card to beat Lyon 3-2
PARIS (AP) — Monaco overcame a two-goal deficit and a red card to beat Lyon 3-2 Sunday, leapfrogging its rival to move up to third place in the French league.
Midfielder Rony Lopes swept home a fine strike from the edge of the penalty area with one minute remaining, prompting jubilant scenes on the home bench.
Lyon looked in total control after scoring twice inside 30 minutes. Monaco drew level but then had forward Keita Balde sent off just before halftime.
Lyon’s attack can be lethal, but its sloppy defense is prone to huge lapses in concentration. Last weekend, it was a similar story in a 3-1 defeat at Bordeaux.
Lyon dropped to fourth, two points behind Monaco and three behind Marseille. Runaway leader Paris Saint-Germain is 11 points clear at the top.
Monaco’s win was even more impressive considering top scorer Radamel Falcao and goalkeeper Danijel Subasic went off injured during the game.
Lyon led through center forward Mariano Diaz in the 12th minute and winger Bertrand Traore in the 28th.
Diaz tried his luck from 30 meters (yards) out and his slightly deflected shot caught Subasic off guard, creeping inside the post. Traore athletically volleyed in left back Ferland Mendy’s cross following a slick Lyon move engineered by forwards Nabil Fekir and Memphis Depay.
But Balde was given too much room to advance down the right and beat three defenders before clipping home a firm shot in the 31st.
Five minutes later, Mendy gave away a penalty for tugging center back Kamil Glik as they contested a cross. Falcao took the penalty, scoring at the second attempt after Anthony Lopes guessed correctly to save his initial effort. It was the Colombia striker’s 17th league goal — one behind PSG’s Neymar.
One minute before the break, Balde got a second yellow card for a reckless lunging tackle on Mendy near the touchline.
Despite having the extra man, Lyon almost fell behind when Rony Lopes drew a leaping save from Anthony Lopes with a curling strike midway through the second half. The goalkeeper denied Monaco again with another fine stop shortly after, tipping a 25-meter (yard) strike from midfielder Youri Tielemans over the crossbar.
But he was beaten by the quick-thinking of Rony Lopes, who hardly broke stride as he whipped a low shot into the bottom right corner.
Striker Yeni Ngbakoto’s stunning first goal for Guingamp secured the Brittany derby with a 1-0 win at Rennes.
Rennes was pushing forward for a winner in the second minute of injury time when Guingamp’s defense smashed the ball clear up the field. Ngbakoto chased it down to the right edge of the penalty area, before clipping a curling half-volley over goalkeeper Tomas Koubek and into the bottom left corner.
The win was even sweeter for travelling fans since it moved Guingamp above Rennes and into ninth place, with Rennes dropping to 10th.
DA SILVA DOUBLE
Caen had an unlikely match winner as defender Damien Da Silva scored twice in a 3-2 home victory against Nantes.
Da Silva got the winning goal 10 minutes from time with a close-range diving header at the back post after striker Ronny Rodelin flicked on a corner.
Striker Yacine Bammou gave the visitors the lead in the 31st minute with a neat shot into the bottom corner. Caen top scorer Ivan Santini equalized from the penalty spot four minutes later, thumping his effort into the top corner.
Da Silva put Caen ahead with a firm header from a corner in the 53rd before Bammou pounced in the 57th with a fine half-volley.