Olympique de Marseille beat Saint-Etienne 2-1 on Saturday, but it came at a price as Andre-Pierre Gignac was ruled out of the midweek Champions League clash with Manchester United and two other forwards were also injured.
Girondins de Bordeaux, beaten at home by Stade Malherbe Caen last weekend, were hammered 5-1 at Lorient to leave coach Jean Tigana fretting over his future given the 2009 champions mid-table malaise in 12th spot.
Kevin Gameiro grabbed a hat-trick for the team in orange, while Bordeaux goalkeeper Cedric Carrasso was sent off late on after being booked twice for handling outside the area.
Marseille’s win lifted them up to second in Ligue 1, three points behind leaders Lille.
“It’s the first time this season we’ve won three in a row,” Marseille coach Didier Deschamps told reporters. “With our determination and application, it was the right result.”
Lucho Gonzalez broke the deadlock for the frustrated champions on 68 minutes when he slotted in Gignac’s pull-back and Loic Remy netted the second 10 minutes later from close range. Christophe Landrin pulled a goal back for Les Verts in stoppage-time.
France striker Gignac, who scored twice in last weekend’s 2-1 win at Sochaux, hobbled off on 74 minutes with a strained adductor muscle and Marseille said in a statement that he would miss Wednesday’s round-of-16 first-leg match at home to United.
Remy followed him down the tunnel with an ankle knock soon after scoring his goal.
A third forward, Brandao, was substituted midway through the second half, but Marseille said he and Remy could be fit for Wednesday.
Saint-Etienne, beaten 4-1 by Olympique Lyonnais last weekend, started the brighter at the Stade Velodrome, with Gabriel Heinze almost scoring an own-goal before the visitors had the ball in the net on 13 minutes, only to be thwarted by the offside flag.
Marseille then had two shots cleared off the line straight after each other, before finding the breakthrough.
Monaco’s hopes of a revival after last Saturday’s win over Lorient proved short lived as they lost 2-0 at Stade Brestois 29 to remain third from bottom and in the relegation zone.
Lens are a place below them after a 3-2 home defeat by Sochaux which featured a red card apiece.
Auxerre, in 16th position, and bottom side Arles-Avignon did nothing to ease their drop fears by sharing a 1-1 draw, while Stade Malherbe Caen were held 2-2 at home by Valenciennes.