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Leaders Nice slump to first Ligue 1 defeat at Caen

ANALYST
News 06 Nov 2016, 21:36 IST
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PARIS (Reuters) - Leaders Nice suffered their first Ligue 1 defeat of the season as Ivan Santini's first-half penalty secured a 1-0 victory for strugglers Caen on Sunday.

The result left Lucien Favre's side on 29 points from 12 games, three ahead of second-placed Monaco, who hammered Nancy 6-0 on Saturday.

Champions Paris St Germain will also move three points behind Nice if they beat Stade Rennais at home later on Sunday.

Despite boasting considerable firepower up front with Alassane Plea, Younes Belhanda and Mario Balotelli, Nice were unusually toothless.

Three minutes before the break, Malang Sarr lost the ball to Ronny Rodelin, who sped into the area where he was brought down by Henrique Dalbert. Santini converted the resulting penalty by wrongfooting Nice keeper Yoan Cardinale.

Nice went close in the 63rd minute when Belhanda's through ball found Balotelli, only for the Italian's shot to crash against the post.

The visitors were more aggressive, but Caen's defence held firm to help them escape the relegation zone as they moved up from 18th to 15th on 13 points.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Toby Davis)

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