Marseille scored two late goals to draw 2-2 at home to Strasbourg in Ligue 1 on Sunday after playing for more than an hour with 10 men after Leonardo Balerdi was sent off.
Argentina’s central midfielder saw red for bringing down defender Habib Diallo in the 29th minute, but Marseille it was the first after half time through Chancel Mbemba.
Alexis Sanchez put away a penalty to keep Marseille level, but Jean-Eudes Aholou struck twice in the last three minutes to shock the hosts and salvage a crucial goal for his team.
“I think today the main thing is the red card. The referee made a mistake and for me it’s not a sending off,” said the Marseille coach. Igor Tudor.
“As a former player, I know the difference between a contact and a push. He just touched him and the referee couldn’t tell the difference.”
Marseille are 10 points behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain and their hold on second place is under threat from Lens, who are just two points behind. behind.
Strasbourg started at the Velodrome in 17th place but pulled themselves out of the relegation zone thanks to Aholou’s equaliser.
Lois Openda scored five minutes into the first half as Lens beat Clermont 4-0 earlier in the day to climb back above Monaco into third place.
Lens’ fierce title challenge has fizzled out with just one win in their last seven games while Openda, who have not scored since January 11 , used gifts from family protection.
He broke between two defenders before putting the ball between the legs of goalkeeper Mory Diaw after 30 minutes.
Three minutes later the Belgian striker pounced when Clermont’s Maxime Gonalons gave him the ball on the edge of his penalty area.
Less than a minute later, Openda took advantage of another big mistake made by central defender Mateusz Wieteska to add a third.
“There are strikers who haven’t scored for a while,” said Lens coach Franck Haise. “Lois is a hitter who knows how to score, she has, it’s good that it happened this afternoon.”
“After twelve games without a goal, I won’t argue about his inequity.”
In the second half Seko Fofana hit the post for Lens before substitute Alexis Claude-Maurice made it 4-0 from Openda’s cross.
Monaco went down 1-0 at home to Reims while Arsenal loanee and England Under-21 Folarin Balogun scored his 16th league goal of the season.
The hosts hit the post twice through Wissam Ben Yedder and Brazilian Vanderson before Balogun pounced on a pass from Alexis Flips and curled low past Monaco goalkeeper Alexander Nubel.
Reims are unbeaten in Ligue 1 since Will Still took over as coach in October, winning for the fourth time in five games and making it 19 unbeaten.
They move up to eighth and into the top four of the European standings.
Toulouse won 2-0 at bottom Angers and Lorient beat Troyes on the same scoreline.
Nantes got a late equalizer through Egyptian forward Mostafa Mohamed to make it 2-2 against Nice, but Montpellier defeated Ajaccio 1-0.
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