Frey goal sees off Caen

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Lille secured back-to-back wins for the first time this season with a 1-0 victory over bottom side Caen. A midweek win against Evian ensured Rene Girard's side a victorious return to Ligue 1 action after the Christmas and new year break, and a first-half goal from Michael Frey sealed a second triumph in three days at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy. Caen created few clear-cut chances and they now trail 19th-placed Metz by four points and are five from safety. Lille beat Caen by the same scoreline at the Stade Michel d'Ornano in their second Ligue 1 match of the season in August and the hosts started brightly. Captain Rio Mavuba picked out Nolan Roux in the second minute with a fine cross but the striker could only head over. It mattered little, however, for Lille were ahead in the 20th minute when Roux turned provider and Frey steered his teasing cross beyond visiting goalkeeper Remy Vercoutre and into the net. Caen, playing their first league match of the year, could have been level two minutes later but Simon Kjaer cleared Cedric Kante's shot off the line. Denmark defender Kjaer repeated the feat three minutes later to deny Lenny Nangis. Lille could have doubled their advantage 10 minutes before half-time but this time Dennis Appiah prevented Frey from notching a second goal of the match. Roux's optimistic long-range effort a minute after the restart sailed wide of Vercoutre's upright and the keeper had to be alert to deny the former Lens man shortly after the hour mark. Caen defender Damien Da Silva fluffed a header from a dangerous Herve Bazile free-kick soon afterwards and Julien Feret had a penalty appeal turned down by referee Olivier Thual 13 minutes from time. The remaining minutes were uneventful as Lille held on to record their seventh league victory of the season.