03.10.2015 22:13 h

Misfiring Lacazette leads Lyon past Reims

Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette atoned for another missed penalty by scoring the game's only goal on Saturday in a 1-0 victory at home to Reims in Ligue 1.

Lazacette blasted a first-half spot-kick against the woodwork before netting just his second goal of the season shortly after as Lyon avoided a Champions League hangover on a particularly damp afternoon at the Stade Gerland.

It was just a second win in seven games in all competitions for OL, who pulled to within five points of Paris Saint-Germain, after they had suffered a damaging 1-0 home defeat against Valencia in Europe four days earlier.

"We put in a good first-half display but it wasn't as good in the second half when we began to retreat a bit," said Lazacette.

"The most important thing is the three points, though."

Lyon coach Hubert Fournier added: "We're not going through our best period in terms of confidence. We need to boost it and it's through winning matches that we can achieve that."

Meanwhile it was just a second reverse of the season for surprise package Reims as their five-match unbeaten run was brought to an end.

Lyon, soundly beaten at Bordeaux last weekend, were forced into an early reshuffle on Saturday when Milan Bisevac hobbled off after just six minutes and was replaced by Jordan Ferri.

Johny Placide, whose injury-time own goal handed Lyon a 2-1 win in the same fixture last season, made a smart low stop to turn behind a deflected strike from Lacazette midway through the first half.

Nicolas de Preville then tested Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes at the other end with a low drive that the Portuguese international pushed away at his near post.

The hosts were awarded a penalty on 41 minutes when Jaba Kankava handled inside the area but Reims were handed a reprieve as Lacazette smashed his spot-kick against the crossbar.

It was the second time Lacazette had failed to convert from the penalty spot this season following a costly miss in a 1-1 draw at nine-man Gent in the Champions League last month.

Last year's Ligue 1 Player of the Year redeemed himself, however, on the stroke of half-time as Lacazette exchanged passes with Claudio Beauvue before firing across Placide to put Lyon in front.

The frame of the goal came to Reims' rescue for a second time on 56 minutes with Beauvue sending a thumping header against the bar following a Mathieu Valbuena corner.

Placide then made a fine stop to tip over a stinging long-range effort from Lacazette with substitute Grejohn Kyei squandering a glorious chance to level for Reims on 75 minutes after a wonderful ball in from Diego on the left.

Prince Oniangue nearly snatched a point for the visitors at the death but Lopes threw himself to his right to palm away the Congo midfielder's scissor kick.

Elsewhere, promoted Angers continued their terrific start as they climbed to second, two points behind PSG, following a 1-0 win over Bastia.

Guingamp ensured Troyes remained winless as the Brittany outfit claimed a 1-0 victory, while bottom side Gazelec Ajaccio drew 2-2 with Toulouse.

Nice's match against Nantes was abandoned at the start of the second half, with the score 2-2, due to heavy rain on the south coast.

On Sunday, all eyes will be on the Parc des Princes when league leaders PSG take on bitter rivals Marseille in Le Classique.

Third-place Saint-Etienne visit Caen with fourth-placed Rennes at Monaco and Bordeaux making the trip to Lorient.

On Friday, Lille got a much-needed boost with Sofiane Boufal and Djibril Sidibe lifting the northerners to a 2-0 win over fellow strugglers Montpellier.