Neither side could find their rythym in an uninspiring encounter at Stade Lille Metropole.
Lille were held to a 1-1 draw by Olympique Lyonnais in an uneventful game where clear-cut chances came at a premium.
Moussa Sow edged Les Dogues in front in the 8th minute when Eden Hazard floated in a free kick from the right hand side. The Senegalese striker found himself unmarked and directed his effort past Hugo Lloris in the Lyon goal after a flick from Adil Rami. Les Gones cancelled out the strike midway in the first half when poor defending allowed Kim Kallstrom to fire home from an impressive 25 metres.
LOSC Coach Rudi Garcia rotated his side, making 9 changes from Thursday’s defeat to PSV in the Europa League, and it was Les Dogues who got out of the starting blocks quicker, when Gervinho got in past Anthony Revelliere and the Lyon defender brought him down in an attempt to avert the danger. From the resulting freekick, Hazard crossed in the ball from the right, and via Rami’s intervention, Sow got in between the defenders, taking advantage of shambolic positioning to notch his 17th league goal of the season.
Lyon immediately looked to put themselves back into the match when Jimmy Briand held off the challenge of Mathieu Debuchy, yet directed his effort straight at Mickael Landreau. Moments later, good inter-linking play between Yoann Gourcuff and Revelliere enabled Les Gones to drill in the ball from the right, which was not dealt with by Aurélien Chedjou and his header fell to Kallstrom who blasted the ball past Landreau from 25 metres.
Lille had chances to add to their tally at the beginning of the second half, but Moussa Sow and Gervinho missed their chances. Florent Balmont also had his opportunity when he charged at Lyon’s defence and broke free, but dallied on the ball long enough for the defence to head away his cross.
The best opportunity of the second half fell to Jeremy Toulalan who expertly controlled the ball from Gourcuff’s freekick and teed up the shot with his left foot, but Landreau was equal to it, clawing the ball away from danger. As the game petered out, Landreau dived at the feet of Briand as the Lyon hitman was closing in on goal, and at the other end Hugo Lloris comfortably took a header in stoppage time from substitute Tulio de Melo.
The result sees Lille return to the summit of Ligue 1, albeit only on goal difference from Stade Rennais. Champions Olympique de Marseille remain a point behind and face Lille next weekend. Lyon are in 5th, four points behind their opponents.Follow Goal.com on to get the latest soccer news directly. Check out Goal.com's page; be part of the best soccer fan community in the world!