Four days after a stunning display of attacking football at Manchester City midweek, Monaco resorted to set pieces to beat Guingamp 2-1 and move three points clear at the top of the French league standings
PARIS — After a stunning display of attacking football at Manchester City midweek, Monaco resorted to set-pieces to beat Guingamp 2-1 and move three points clear at the top of the French league on Saturday.
Monaco, which lost 5-3 to City in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 match, prevailed with goals from Kamil Glik and Fabinho to put pressure on defending champion Paris Saint-Germain.
Third-place PSG is six points behind ahead of its trip to bitter rival Marseille on Sunday.
"It was very important that we stayed focused after the Champions League," Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim said. "Our team put on a big match. We were in control."
The race for the title remains wide open in France, with second-place Nice trailing just three points behind its Riviera neighbor following a 2-1 win against Montpellier on Friday.
Monaco players did not look particularly tired in the aftermath of their frenetic display at Manchester, though Guingamp started better. Yannis Slibur forced goalkeeper Danijel Subasic to a good save early in the match and Moustapha Diallo thought he put the hosts in front with a fine header but his goal was cancelled for offside.
Glik broke the deadlock three minutes later when he slid in to knock in the ball following a free kick from Thomas Lemar.
Radamel Falcao, who scored twice against City, came close to doubling the lead before halftime with an acrobatic volley but Christophe Kerbrat blocked the shot.
French football rising star Kylian Mbappe finally gave Monaco the opportunity to move further away when he was fouled in the box by keeper Karl-Johan Johnssonl. Fabinho converted with a subtle touch right in the middle of goal with four minutes left.
Monaco, which was unbeaten in its least nine league games, could not keep a clean sheet, though, as Etienne Didot scored a fine goal.
LILLE 2, BORDEAUX 3
Bordeaux delivered a masterclass of counterattacking football and posted a third win in four league matches.
The visitors were happy to relinquish ball possession but were a constant threat. Adam Ounas scored his first brace in a league game and Valentin Vada was also on the scoresheet.
Lille, which led 2-1, played with nine men in the final 10 minutes following red cards for Julian Palmieri and Rio Mavuba.
Bordeaux moved to fifth in the standings.
ANGERS 3, BASTIA 0
Fresh from winning the African Cup with Cameroon, Karl Toko Ekambi scored twice and Angers secured its biggest win this season to move six points clear off the bottom three.
It was the first time this season that Angers posted three consecutive wins.
Struggling Nancy was held to a goalless draw by Toulouse, and Rennes produced its first win this year, 1-0 against Lorient.