Lille self-loathing after draw with Anderlecht
LILLE, France, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Lille players could blame only themselves after a 2-2 draw to Anderlecht on Tuesday dented their hopes of qualifying for the knockout stage of the Champions League.
The Ligue 1 side allowed Belgian striker Mbo Mpenza to strike twice to cancel out the hosts' advantage and leave them third in Group H.
Lille are now one point adrift of AEK Athens, who beat AC MIlan 1-0 for only their second victory in the Champions League.
Milan, who lead the table with 10 points from five games, went through despite the defeat while Anderlecht were eliminated.
'We are no longer the masters of our own fate,' Lille coach Claude Puel told reporters afterwards.
'We are where we deserve to be,' added defender Mathieu Chalme. 'We did not do what we had to do to get a better result. It's our fault.'
Lille went ahead with a 28th minute Peter Odemwingie goal but Mpenza netted seven minutes from the interval to level the tie.
The French side went ahead a second time two minutes into the second half when Nicolas Fauvergue fired a shot past Davy Schollen only for Mpenza to complete his double one minute later.
'We squandered a chance to make a giant step towards qualification and we can only blame ourselves for this, it is very disappointing,' said midfielder Mathieu Bodmer.
'Now we have to give our all against Milan,' said Fauvergue.
Lille travel to Milan in two weeks' time while AEK Athens will play at Anderlecht.
Lille will advance only if they win or draw, providing that the Greek side do not get a similar or better result in Brussels.