Football: Niang snatches a point for Marseille

12th March 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, March 11, 2007 (AFP) - Senegal's Mamadou Niang snatched a point for Marseille against Lyon with a late goal in a 1-1 French League draw at the Gerland stadium on Sunday.

PARIS, March 11, 2007 (AFP) - Senegal's Mamadou Niang snatched a point for Marseille against Lyon with a late goal in a 1-1 French League draw at the Gerland stadium on Sunday.

Former Aston Villa and Liverpool striker Milan Baros had opened the scoring with a superb 20th minute strike but although Lyon dominated for long spells, Niang cropped up three minutes from time to spoil the party.

Baros spurned an injury time chance to pull Lyon ahead after being through with just Cedric Carrasso to beat, but the Marseille keeper made an impressive reflex save diving low to his right.

It has been a disappointing week for Gerard Houllier's men who exited the Champions League on Tuesday at the hands of Roma.

And they emerged feeling cheated of the three points after former Arsenal striker Sylvain Wiltord fluffed an easy chance on the hour and Juninho failed to find the net from the several freekick chances at his disposal.

Lyon however still lead the table with 62 points, 13 ahead of second-placed Lens and 19 in front of third-placed Lille.

Earlier, Paris Saint Germain, one of only two French clubs to have won a European competition, fell 1-0 to Auxerre for their seventh home defeat of the season leaving them on course for relegation.

The 1996 Cup Winners Cup champions, whose appointment of former Rangers and Lyon boss Paul Le Guen was expected to boost their league credentials, find themselves once again in crisis.

Following the game winner by Auxerre defender Younes Kaboul, PSG are now second-from-bottom of the French championship.

PSG's confidence level has been declining in recent weeks, apart from their 2-1 UEFA Cup victory over Benfica three days ago, and with just 10 matches to go things are not looking good with perilous away trips to negotiate at both Rennes and Lens.

Under-fire coach Le Guen, a former player with PSG in happier days, admitted his players were beginning to form a complex about a possible relegation to the second division.

"It's a worrying time. We all know that. But we have to free ourselves from the burden and try to look ahead with confidence," said Le Guen.

"I'm behind the players 100 percent. We can all be annoyed by their mistakes, but we have to put ourselves in their position.

"I know what it's like to play for Paris. Determination itself is simply not enough, but we have to fight with everything we've got."

Second-placed Lens could only draw 1-1 at home to Sedan on Sunday when victory would have further consolidated their prospects of Champions League football next season. Sedan striker Gregory Pujol found the net in the second minute before midfielder Seydou Keita equalised for Lens on the half-hour.

Though Lens are on a run of seven matches without defeat, they have lost a significant number of points at home where they have only won once -- against Sochaux -- in 2007.

Lille's week did not get much better on Saturday when they could only manage a 0-0 draw at mid-table Lorient three days after their Champions League exit.

Lille, one of the surprise last 16 teams in the continent's top club competition, lost 1-0 at Manchester United on Wednesday for a 2-0 aggregate defeat.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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