Racing Lens beat St Etienne 2-1

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Racing Lens have moved up to fourth place in the French Ligue 1, with a 2-1 victory at home to St. Etienne.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:53 IST
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Racing Lens have moved up to fourth place in the French Ligue 1, with a 2-1 victory at home to St Etienne. The opening stages in Sunday's game were close, but Lens were not defending well and they were punished after 25 minutes when the visitors took the lead. Loic Perrin was left unmarked on the edge of the area. When the ball deflected off a Lens defender, he had time to chest it down and then fire the ball into the bottom corner of the net. Eight minutes later, however, Lens were back on level times thanks to a brilliant free-kick from Olivier Thomert that soared into the top corner. Goalkeeper Jeremy Janot could do nothing but watch as the ball sailed in. Missed opportunity Four minutes from the break St Etienne ought to have claimed back their lead, but somehow Bafetimbi Gomis miss-kicked the ball when facing an open goal. Gomis was to rue that missed chance, as 19 minutes after the restart it was Lens who went ahead for the first time. Daniel Cousin played a neat one-two with Thomert and fired the ball past Janot to the delight of the home crowd. Lens could have increased their lead further after 76 minutes when the same two players advanced toward goal. Once again Thomert's pass was good, but Cousin fired the ball straight at Janot who was able to deflect it out of play. Lens held on to their lead to the final whistle, claiming all three points and moving up to fourth in the standings, 15 points behind leaders Lyon. (AP)

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