PARIS (AP) — Marseille overcame a terrible mistake by goalkeeper Steve Mandanda to earn a 1-1 draw at Nantes in the French league on Saturday.
The match between two of French soccer’s most storied clubs sharing 18 titles — a record 10 for Marseille — was a very drab affair in the first half.
That changed shortly after the break when Mandanda, France’s No. 2, gifted Nantes the lead. He misjudged a back pass from Alvaro Gonzalez and totally missed the ball as he tried to kick it out, allowing midfielder Ludovic Blas an easy tap-in.
Dimitri Payet rescued a point when he finished powerfully from Yuto Nagatomo’s left-wing cross midway through the second half.
The match ended with a late red card for Marseille right back Hiroki Sakai, who was sent off for a dangerous high tackle.
Marseille remains in sixth place while Nantes moved up a spot to 17th ahead of Sunday’s games.
Earlier, substitute Charles Abi struck late to earn Saint-Etienne a 1-1 home draw with Reims and extend its unbeaten run in the league to five games.
Abi pounced from close range in the 88th minute after Reims’ Marshall Munetsi headed off his line following a free kick and the ball fell kindly to him.
Saint-Etienne should have gone ahead, but striker Denis Bouanga hastily shot wide from just meters out in the first minute of injury time.
In an even contest between sides hovering just under midtable, promising Ivory Coast forward El Bilal Toure headed Reims ahead in the 71st from Moussa Doumbia’s cross.
Defending champion Paris Saint-Germain and Lille are in action on Sunday with PSG hosting fourth-place Monaco and Lille away to in-form Lorient.
Lyon won 3-2 at Brest on Friday to take the lead but will drop back down to third if PSG and Lille at least draw their matches on Sunday.
Lille sits in second place and is one point ahead of PSG in third.
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