Olympique Lyonnais and Saint-Etienne shared the spoils in a tempestuous Rhone Valley derby that will leave both sides with regrets.
OL started the match ferociously—driven by the motivation of reclaiming top spot and inspired by the sublime attacking interplay of Clinton N’Jie, Alexandre Lacazette and new France international Nabil Fekir.
They had numerous chances within the first 20 minutes as the ASSE goal was bombarded by shots.
Stephanois captain Loic Perrin was forced to block a shot on the line on 11 minutes, while Fekir hit the woodwork moments later.
Lyon did eventually make the breakthrough when Clinton N’Jie buried Fekir’s assist.
However, moments later, the match’s complexion changed completely.
Max Gradel burst forth and received a second chance after Anthony Lopes’s initial save. The resulting shot struck Lindsay Rose’s arm—reducing Lyon to ten men and giving ASSE a penalty.
Gradel duly converted it, while Romain Hamouma fired Saint-Etienne ahead on half-time as Lyon lost their way.
The home side responded just after the break when Christophe Jallet headed home from a corner.
Things broke down a little during the rest of the contest, with regular stoppages in a contest punctured by fouls.
Lyon move top, although they are equal on points with PSG, who have a game in hand. Saint Etienne remain in fifth—two points behind Monaco in third who occupy the final Champions League spot.