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France football

Exciting kick-off to French football season

by Amanda Morrow

Article published on the 2009-08-10 Latest update 2009-08-11 12:34 TU

Mamadou Niang.(Photo: Reuters)

Mamadou Niang.
(Photo: Reuters)

The French football season Saturday night kicked off amid a flurry of excitement. Marseille, the title favourites, opened their campaign clinching an easy 2-0 victory at Grenoble, while Lyon came from behind to draw 2-2 at Le Mans.

Marseille’s season was widely expected to start with a bang - but credit must be given to Grenoble, who showed they had the mettle to make a game of it after a nightmare start.


After just two minutes, Mamadou Niang scored for Marseille, and Benoit Cheyrou made sure of the points with ten minutes to go.


Over in Le Mans, new signing Lisandro Lopez proved to be Lyon’s hero, as the seven-time French champions twice came from behind to grab a dramatic point. Modibo Maiga put the home side ahead on 21 minutes before Mathieu Bodmer equalised six minutes later. Mathieu Coutaeur then put Le Mans back in front on 58 minutes but Lopez earned Lyon a share of the spoils with a minute to go.


Meanwhile Montpellier and Paris Saint Germain also drew. Cyril Jeunechamp received his marching orders for the home side before Ludovic Giuly put the visitors ahead in the 71st minute. But Emir Spahic rallied to net an equaliser in the dying minutes.


American Charlie Davies made his debut for Sochaux, who claimed an away victory at Auxerre. 


Nice managed the same feat at St Etienne, with Mahamane Traore and Loic Remy finding the net.


In other matches, Monaco scored once to beat Toulouse, while Rennes dished out a three-nil drubbing to Boulogne.


Current champions Bordeaux will take on Lens on Sunday night, while Lille will play Lorient.

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