Girondins de Bordeaux shrugged off their shock defeat to En Avant de Guingamp last weekend to beat rock-bottom Evian Thonon Gaillard 2-1 on Friday and take top spot in Ligue 1.
Goals in either half from Diego Rolan and Wahbi Khazri gave Willy Sagnol’s pace-setters the three points to leave Evian rooted to the foot of the table with just one point from six games having leaked 15 goals already.
“It’s our second match in a row against a team who are already up against it, who need points,” Sagnol said. “Although we wasted chances, the players still showed great spirit and fought until the end. This will keep us there this season.”
Livewire 21-year-old Uruguayan striker Rolan opened the scoring after 19 minutes with an assured, sidefooted finish from Nicolas Maurice-Belay’s pinpoint cross from the left flank.
It was Rolan’s fourth league goal of the season.
Four minutes before the hour mark it was 2-0 with former Bastia midfielder Khazri hitting a fine drive past Jesper Hansen in the Evian goal.
The confident finish matched the perfect through ball supplied by veteran Czech midfielder Jaroslav Plasil, who again exploited the generous space left down the left by a poorly-organized Evian defense.
The visitors offered little up front, but grabbed an 86th-minute consolation when a Yeltsin Tejeda drive from the edge of the box took a wicked deflection off Mariano and flew into the corner past Cedric Carrasso in the Bordeaux goal.
Evian coach Pascal Dupraz celebrated his 52nd birthday on Friday, but refused to let defeat dampen his enthusiasm for the campaign ahead.
“Although it’s difficult having taken just one point from 18, there are still 96 to play for,” he said. “My team was able to compete with a side who are the league leaders. It took a lot of character not to let our heads drop after the first goal.”
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