Lille beat Lyon, Marseille held
Lyon's Ligue 1 title bid took a huge blow as they suffered a second straight defeat, a surprise 3-1 home loss to Lille.
Coming on the back of last week's reverse away to lowly AC Ajaccio, Sunday's result leaves them six points adrift of Paris St Germain who have suddenly found themselves coasting after poor results for both Lyon and Marseille since the winter break.
Aurelien Chedjou headed the visitors in front after 28 minutes and then doubled their advantage through Florent Balmont seconds before the break, converting Lyon coach Remi Garde's half-time address into crisis talks.
But whatever he said did little good as Salomon Kalou fired in a penalty five minutes into the second half.
Lisandro Lopez got one back from the penalty spot seven minutes later but nothing would come for Les Gones in open play and Lille saw the game out.
Marseille finished the match with nine men and failed to take advantage of struggling opposition as a 1-1 draw with Evian saw them continue a poor run with their challenge at the top of Ligue 1 faltering.
Things had looked good for the visitors, who started the match in third place, when Andre-Pierre Gignac put them ahead five minutes after the break.
However, the lead lasted just eight minutes before Yannick Sagbo levelled from the spot after Kassim Abdallah had fouled Saber Khelifa, with the defender also given a straight red card as the last man.
Marseille's miserable afternoon continued 15 minutes from time when Jordan Ayew was sent off after being awarded his second yellow card and they have now taken just two points from three games.
Two late goals by Romain Alessandrini and Mevlut Erding guided Rennes to their first victory in three games as they saw off Toulouse 2-0.
Alessandrini struck 11 minutes from time pouncing on a rare error by Toulouse goalkeeper Ali Ahamada before Erding volleyed home five minutes later to confirm victory and leave the visitors winless in three matches.
Information from the Press Association was used in this report