Dimitar Berbatov brace seals Monaco win over Toulouse


Two goals from Dimitar Berbatov earned Monaco a 2-0 Ligue 1 victory over Toulouse on Friday night to ensure the principality club's recent revival continued. Former Manchester United, Tottenham and Bayer Leverkusen striker Berbatov scored in both halves to seal back-to-back wins for his side, who move up to seventh in the league standings, nine points behind leaders Marseille but only four shy of the top three. Toulouse remain 11th after slumping to their seventh league defeat in nine games to ruin their steady, if unspectacular, start to the season. Both sides made cautious starts and the first real chance of the Stadium Municipal encounter took more than half an hour to materialise and it fell to the visitors. Joao Moutinho freed Anthony Martial on the left-hand side of the penalty area and the France Under-21 striker skipped past two defenders before forcing an excellent save from Toulouse goalkeeper Ali Ahamada. Berbatov volleyed a Yannick Ferreira Carrasco corner over the crossbar in the 37th minute, but put his side into the lead in the final minute of the first half when he effortlessly controlled a Martial cross from the right before despatching past Ahamada. Toulouse should have been level seven minutes after the restart but Aleksandar Pesic's header sailed inches wide of Danijel Subasic's upright, much to the relief of the stranded Monaco keeper. Martin Braithwaite's 73rd-minute header also missed by the smallest of margins and the hosts were left to rue those misses when Berbatov doubled Monaco's lead from the penalty spot three minutes later after Fabinho had been tripped in the area by Dragos Grigore. Monaco host Zenit St Petersburg in midweek Champions League action before returning to Ligue 1 duty against leaders Marseille next Sunday. Toulouse will look to get their stuttering season back on track when they travel to Lille in nine days' time.