Nantes 1-2 Nice
December 10, 2017
Well carried off by the Gym
After having conceded the opening goal of the game, a goal which looked to come after a foul on Sarr, the Aiglons cancelled out the lead through Plea before imposing themselves on the game, like against Rennes, with some incredible inspiration from Balotelli with fifteen minutes to go. A nice win for the Gym, playing at the home of the side in 5th place in Ligue 1, which allows the Aiglons to continue their comeback into the top half of the table.
Unbeaten at home since September (and against the Gym for 13 years), the Nantais thought to be in the right place, once again on Sunday with their game which placed little importance on possession but focussed on quick counters at the breakdown. They threw themselves onto the Nice passing game, before showing themselves to be particularly explosive on every occasion that the timing was right. This troubled the Aiglons, and maybe a little more. Given that they conceded the opening goal following a trivial long ball, which beat Marlon in the centre circle, before the piercing Sala did the rest. In fact, a push (which incomprehensibly wasn’t given) in the back of Sarr to rob him of the ball, then a pass out right for Bammou whose first-touch strike left Benitez with no chance (12’).
A scenario which played into the hands of Claudio Ranieri’s plan, and forced the Gym to be more agressive in defence and to be more probing offensively. This mainly came down the right wing with Souquet and Saint-Maximin, but without ever finding Mario in the right position. That would come later.
In multiplying the number of fouls on the Italian, his bodyguard, Diego Carlos gave him two free-kicks right down the middle. But they weren’t going to be the way to find the breakthrough for the Aiglons. Neither would an acrobatic flick by Saint-Maximin. Although the keeper was able to deal with the first effort from the former Bastia man’s, he had to admit defeat two minutes later after Plea planted his header into the back of the net from a second consecutive corner from Seri (42’ 1-1).
Back on the right track, OGC Nice showed more control of the game after the pause. And this is despite several opportunities that were gifted to the opposition which could have cost them dearly. Luckily, the Canaries rarely hit the target, like Sala with his header, and Diego Carlos from a free-kick at the end of the game. And when they did, they could only find an impeccable Walter Benitez. Lively to get down at his opponent’s feet, strong in the air and decisive with a fantastic save to deny a header from Iloki which the whole of the Beaujoire thought was in.
At the other end, after a first attempt from Plea, Super Mario took things by the scruff of the neck. A move from the playground, first of all, starting with Saint-Maximin, which finally ended up in Tatarusanu’s hands. Then, after being set-up by the former Monaco man, the Italian let rip from 20 metres out. Sudden, precise, perfect. Securing a 3rd consecutive victory in the league and ensuring a climb back up the table (8th place).
Nantes, the Beaujoire,
FC Nantes 1-2 OGC Nice (half-time 1-1)
Matchday 17 of L1 - 10/12/2017
25 000 spectators
Referee: Jérôme Miguelgorry
Goals: Plea (42’), Balotelli (75’) for Nice; Bammou (12’) for Nantes
Yellow cards: Lees-Melou (21’), Tameze (36’), Balotelli (40’), Souquet (85’) for Nice ; Diego Carlos (68’) for Nantes
FC Nantes: Tatarusanu- Dubois, Diego Carlos, Pallois, Djidji- Traoré- Ngom (Iloki 64’), Rongier (Girotto 76’), Thomasson, Bammou (El Ghanassy 64’) - Sala.
OGC Nice: Benitez- Souquet, Marlon, Sarr- Le Marchand- Lees-Melou, Tameze, Seri- Saint-Maximin (Srarfi 83’), Balotelli, Plea.