Souleymane Camara missed a penalty
eight minutes into stoppage time and three players were sent off
in a dramatic finish as leaders Montpellier were held 2-2 at
home by Evian Thonon Gaillard in Ligue 1 on Tuesday.
The draw extended Montpellier's advantage to six points over
second-placed Paris Saint-Germain who play their game in hand on
Wednesday at home to Saint-Etienne.
Younes Belhanda put the hosts, who have three matches left
this season, in front with a first-half penalty only for Thomas
Kahlenberg to equalise for Evian after 44 minutes.
Kevin Berigaud added a close-range effort for Evian midway
through the second half but Olivier Giroud levelled with his
21st league goal of the season six minutes from time.
Morocco midfielder Belhanda, one of Montpellier's players of
the season, could be banned for several matches for punching
Cedric Mongongu as both players were sent off following a mass
Second-half substitute Camara was about to take his penalty
when the fighting started and had to wait for more than five
minutes before having his shot parried by keeper Stephan
"We shot ourselves in the foot because it took too much time
to take the penalty," Giroud told the Canal Plus TV channel.
Evian's Saber Khelifa, who had already left the pitch, was
also red-carded in stoppage time.
PLENTY OF POSSESSION
Montpellier enjoyed plenty of possession and had the first
clear chance when Giroud's volley on the turn was palmed away by
Andersen in the 10th minute.
The Danish keeper was again made to work two minutes later,
stretching to his left to tip away Marco Estrada's fierce low
Andersen then conceded the game's first penalty when he
felled Giroud while trying to punch a cross, the France striker
appearing to briefly lose consciousness before getting back to
Belhanda converted the spot-kick before Kahlenberg levelled
by volleying in a Khelifa header.
Montpellier lacked energy in the second half and Camara came
on for Karim Ait Fana on the hour but it was Evian who took the
lead when Berigaud latched on to a Cedric Barbosa cross from the
left on 69 minutes.
Camara then looked offside when he set up Giroud's goal in
the 84th minute.
Elsewhere, Bastia were promoted after clinching the Ligue 2
title with a 3-0 win over Metz.
They have a 10-point lead over second-placed Stade Reims
with three games left.
Bastia's promotion came almost 20 years to the day after 18
people died when a stand in the club's Furiani stadium collapsed
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