French champion PSG and second-place Lens qualified for next season’s Champions League group stage, while third-place Marseille earned a spot in the third qualifying round of the lucrative European competition. Rennes beat Brest 2-1 thanks to Benjamin Bourigault’s first-half goal to edge Lille into fourth place. Lille booked their place in the Europa League playoffs after a 1-1 draw with Troyes. Bafode Diakite opened the scoring for Lille in the second half, and Troyes striker Ronny Lopes evened the score.
Monaco had finished third in the previous two seasons, but missed out on playing European soccer by losing 2-1 to Toulouse and finishing sixth. Toulouse substitute Rhys Healy scored in regulation time. After 34 rounds, Monaco had a five-point lead over Lille and eight points ahead of Rennes. But Monaco collapsed early in the season, scoring just one point in its last four games.
Everyone is disappointed, Monaco coach Philippe Clément told Canal Plus television. In the last few weeks, the results and the level have not been good enough. At the end of the day, I know everyone is looking at the coach.
PSG is only one point behind Lens after a home defeat to Clermont, which was also Lionel Messi’s farewell match for the club. Messi was booed before the start of the match. PSG led 2-0 after a goal by the departed Sergio Ramos and a penalty by Mbappe. Mbappe celebrated by holding up a shirt with Sergio Rico’s name on it. Rico, PSG’s backup goalkeeper, was seriously injured when he was hit by a horse in Spain last Sunday.
Clermont equalized before halftime thanks to goals from Johan Gatien and Mehdi Zeffan. Grejon Chiei scored the winning goal with a pass in the 63rd minute.
We really needed to pay tribute to Sergio, Mbappe told Canal Plus. I think we are all affected. It’s a very serious situation. It’s something we’ve been thinking about all week. We will pray, we will send maximum positive vibes so that he can get out of this situation as quickly as possible.
Cameroonian striker Ignatius Ganago helped former team Nantes stay afloat by scoring the only goal of the match against Angers (1-0). Nantes snapped a 14-match unbeaten streak in the league and beat Auxerre to finish 16th. Auxerre lost to Lens 3-1 and will be relegated to the second division along with Angers, Ajaccio and Troyes. Four teams are relegated as the league is cut next seasonThe number of clubs will go from 20 to 18. Lens midfielder Alexis Claude-Maurice scored twice before Belgian Lois Openda sealed the victory.
Elsewhere, Clement Vidal scored in Ajaccio’s 1-0 win over Marseille. Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette failed to score against Nice (3-1), becoming the second top scorer with 27 goals.
It’s flattering to be not so far away from Kylian, Lacazette said. I congratulate him on this season. And I’m happy because not many people thought I would be able to do that on my return to Lyon.
Montpellier beat Reims 3-1. Reims striker Folarin Balogun scored the consolation goal, bringing his tally to 21 in his breakout season. Born in New York City, Balogun played for England at the youth level, but decided to play for the U.S. national team at the adult level in May.
Lorient also beat Strasbourg 2-1.