Wed, Apr 18, 2012 - Page 19 News List

Rennes down Nice to stay in hunt for Europa League spot

Reuters, PARIS

Julien Feret of Stade Rennais, front right, scores against OGC Nice in their Ligue 1 match at the Route de Lorient in Rennes, France, on Monday.

Photo: AFP

Stade Rennais stayed in the hunt for a Europa League spot when they beat lowly OGC Nice 3-1 in Ligue 1 on Monday.

Rennes, who faced anger from their fans after being knocked out by third division Quevilly in a French Cup semi-final last week, are fifth on 51 points.

The team finishing fifth will secure a Europa League playoff spot if fourth-placed Olympique Lyonnais beat Quevilly in the French Cup final on April 28.

Nice are 14th on 34 points, only one point above the relegation zone.

On Monday, the Roazhon Celtic Kop, reserved for Rennes’s largest fans group, was empty in a demonstration of anger toward the players.

Rennes went ahead on 23 minutes when Julien Feret fired a low shot past David Ospina.

Tongo Hamed Doumbia doubled the tally a minute before the interval with a downward header, only for Francois Clerc to reduce the arrears shortly before the hour mark with a long-range strike.

However, Jonathan Pitroipa put the result beyond doubt eight minutes from time with a fine chip.

Today, League Cup winners Olympique de Marseille take on Stade Malherbe Caen, while losing finalists Olympique Lyonnais travel to Toulouse.

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