As Monaco came out for the second half of their 35th Ligue 1 game of the season on Sunday night at the Stade Louis II, everything was looking rosy.
They were 1-0 up against direct rivals Lyon. If they could hold the lead, the Monegasque would go stay third but go seven points ahead of Lyon in fourth, just one behind second-place PSG and two behind leaders Lille with three games to play. Essentially, a Champions League place would be all but secure and Monaco would be in the thick of Europe’s wildest title race.
Fifty-five minutes later, after a red card, four goals, a late mass brawl and four more red cards, it was the Lyon players celebrating and Niko Kovac’s Monaco troops flopping to the floor dejected in defeat. It was a crazy half of football, one that perfectly encapsulated the Ligue 1 season.
With the result – a 3-2 win for Lyon inspired by Memphis Depay – the race for the third Champions League spot between Lyon and Monaco is well and truly back on, Lyon just a point behind their hosts. And with PSG and Lille four and five points ahead of Monaco having both won on Saturday, the race for the Ligue 1 title looks to be a direct battle between them.
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