Marveaux double sends Montpellier joint top

PARIS - Montpellier moved level on points with Ligue 1 leaders Girondins Bordeaux after a Joris Marveaux double clinched a 3-1 home win over Stade Rennes on Saturday.

Bordeaux, who have two games in hand, lead promoted Montpellier on goal difference on 51 points.

"Let's just finish in the top five and I'll be the happiest man on earth," Montpellier chairman Louis Nicollin told Orange Sport TV.

In-form Olympique Lyon moved up to third, two points off the pace, thanks to a 2-0 home victory over Nice.

Bordeaux's visit to Le Mans on Sunday was postponed due to an adverse weather forecast.

High winds and heavy rain is expected in most parts of France on Sunday.

Marveaux scored twice for Montpellier from two Alberto Costa free kicks before the interval.

He headed the first in the 25th minute and then capitalised on Rennes goalkeeper Nicolas Douchez's blunder for the second.

Jimmy Briand reduced the arrears from close range with 20 minutes to play after being set up by Asamoah Gyan.

Souleymane Camara then sealed Montpellier's win with a right-foot shot after a swift counter-attack eight minutes from time.

Rennes had Kader Mangane sent off in injury time and team mate Gyan was also shown a red card after the final whistle.

EARLY STRIKE

Lyon triumphed thanks to an early strike from Argentine striker Lisandro Lopez and a stoppage-time own goal by defender Onyekachi Apam.

"We are on a great run. We defend well and we play well," Lyon defender Jean-Alain Boumsong told Foot Plus channel.

"We are happy because ... we are collecting points. We're carrying the momentum from our victory over Real (Madrid)," he added referring to a 1-0 win in the Champions League earlier this month.

Lyon set up their sixth victory in seven league outings when Lopez ignored the windy conditions to tap the ball in from close range after a cross by Miralem Pjanic.

Substitute Bafetimbi Gomis then fell in the box after a challenge from Apam in injury time.

The referee seemed ready to award a penalty before changing his mind as the ball bounced off Apam's knee and into the net.

Nice hover just above the drop zone in 17th place, six points ahead of nearest rivals Le Mans.

St Etienne, level on points with Nice but with a better goal difference, lost 1-0 at Valenciennes.

Bottom club Grenoble claimed their first away win this season, beating Nancy 2-0 thanks to a double by 20-year-old Yoric Ravet.

Grenoble have 13 points, three behind Boulogne-sur-Mer who lost 1-0 at Monaco.