Lyon losing Ligue 1 lead as they sputter to goalless draw vs. Monaco

21

Lyon's Ligue 1 lead over Marseille and Paris Saint-Germain now stands at two points following their hard-fought goalless draw in Monaco. The leaders had won their previous six league games but without injured top marksman Alexandre Lacazette — 21 goals in 22 Ligue 1 matches — they were unable to breach a mean Monaco defence at the Stade Louis II on Sunday night. Monaco failed to claim the victory required to move into the top four, but yet another clean sheet means Leonardo Jardim's team have now gone a remarkable 13 games without conceding in regular time. Lyon exerted most of the early pressure with Yoann Gourcuff's 25-yard shot swerving in the air and forcing Danijel Subasic in the Monaco goal to tip over the crossbar. Gourcuff was behind Lyon's best attacks and his ball soon freed Nabil Fekir who brought another save from the alert Subasic. Monaco were struggling to fashion chances but Dimitar Berbatov had the clearest one of a cagey first half when he headed Fabinho's cross against a post when it was possibly easier to score. Lyon lost key defender Milan Bisevac to injury on the hard surface and several stoppages for players receiving medical treatment prevented the game from developing any real rhythm. But Monaco's Subasic was the busier of the two goalkeepers and he foiled Corentin Tolisso after 27 minutes before Fekir's drive flew inches wide after the break. Monaco kept their best attacking work for the final quarter as Fabinho forced Anthony Lopes into a fine and Wallace, who had earlier appeared to stamp on Lyon defender Samuel Umtiti and could face retrospective action and a possible suspension, almost profited from Yannick Ferreira Carrasco's corner in the final 10 minutes. Layvin Kurzawa fired wide in stoppage time but neither side deserved to win in truth and Lyon had to settle for a point before next weekend's top-of-the-table clash with PSG.