Morocco international Zakaria Aboukhlal played a starring role as newly-promoted Toulouse ended their 18-match winless run in Ligue 1 with a comfortable 3-0 victory at Troyes on Sunday.
Toulouse went ahead in the 36th minute when Aboukhlal, who joined Toulouse this summer from AZ Alkmaar, lifted the ball into the six-yard area, forcing Yasser Larouci to divert an attempted clearance straight into his own net.
After the break, the Moroccan made a major contribution again when Rafael Ratao tapped in his low cross in the 54th minute to extend Toulouse’s lead before substitute Rhys Healey fired in a thunderous strike from 20-yards to secure all three points for the Violets.
Meanwhile, Democratic Republic of Congo internationals Chancel Mbemba and Cedric Bakambu featured for Marseille as they drew 1-1 away to Brest.
Mbemba started his second straight match and played all 90 minutes while Bakambu was a 69th minute substitute as Marseille paid the price for their below-par second-half performance.
Marseille started well and were rewarded in the 38th minute when Nuno Tavares volleyed home Jonathan Clauss’ corner.
However, the home side upped the ante and piled on the pressure which yielded an equaliser after Clauss failed to clear the ball and it fell to Pierre Lees-Melou who blasted a long-range shot from outside the box.
Elsewhere, Algerian forward Andy Delort scored for Nice but his goal was not enough to secure victory for his side as they drew 1-1 with Strasbourg.
Delort scored from the penalty spot when Gerzino Nyamsi’s rash challenge on Amine Gouiri presented him with the chance to emphatically drill his spot-kick into the bottom corner after 35 minutes.
However, Kevin Gameiro lobbed the ball over debutant goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel in the 55th minute, guiding it into the net as Strasbourg denied Nice a victory yet again.
In another match, Angola midfielder Jeremie Bela was among the scorers as Clermont Foot’s blistering second-half comeback saw them hand Stade de Reims a 4-2 loss.
Mali midfielder Kamory Doumbia gave Reims a 23rd minute lead from the penalty spot before Folarin Balogun made it 2-0 seven minutes later also from the spot but Clermont began their comeback in the second half when Komnen Andric also netted from the spot after 51 minutes before levelling matters 11 minutes later.
Muhammed Cham then made it 3-2 with a thunderous strike in the 72nd minute before Bela capped off a second-half comeback five minutes later.