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Rennes respond twice to rein in Marseille

Saturday 26 January 2013 19.16 CET
Rennes goalscorer Kévin Théophile-Catherine (right) vies with Marseille's André-Pierre Gignac

Olympique de Marseille lost ground at the top of Ligue 1 after twice being pegged back in an entertaining 2-2 draw at Stade Rennais FC.

Élie Baup's men were hoping to move within a point of pacesetters Olympique Lyonnais, who triumphed 2-0 on Friday at Valenciennes FC. André Ayew broke the deadlock in style eight minutes before the break, stealing possession in his own half and sprinting the length of the pitch before applying a cool finish to a neat one-two with Mathieu Valbuena.

OM could not add to their lead, however, and were punished just before the hour when Rennes defender Kévin Théophile-Catherine headed in Romain Alessandrini's corner.

The pendulum swung back the visitors' way seven minutes from time as Jordan Ayew converted Morgan Amalfitano's back-post cross, but the end-to-end contest had a final twist when Alessandrini nodded in a late leveller after Steve Mandanda had parried Abdoulaye Sané's angled drive against the woodwork.

Elsewhere, bottom-placed AS Nancy-Lorraine earned their second win of the campaign to prevent FC Lorient stealing fourth spot from Rennes, while 19th-placed ES Troyes AC prevailed by the same 2-1 scoreline against Stade Brestois 29 to ease their equally worrying situation.

Stade de Reims and Évian Thonon Gaillard FC earned 1-1 draws with Toulouse FC and AC Ajaccio respectively. Champions Montpellier Hérault SC beat FC Sochaux-Montbéliard 2-0.

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