Champions League new boys Rennes held at Lille


Paris (AFP) – Rennes, who will take part in the Champions League for the first time in their history this season, began their 2020/2021 Ligue 1 campaign with a 1-1 draw at Lille on Saturday.

Jonathan Bamba gave the hosts the lead with a fine low finish after being fed by Xeka, five minutes after Rennes were reduced to 10 men following Sacha Boey’s karate-style kick on Lille’s Reinildo.

Mozambique international Reinildo was then sent off himself two minutes before the break for a scissor challenge on the marauding Raphinha.

Rennes earned a point thanks to Damien Da Silva, who slid home Eduardo Camavinga’s flick on from a corner to level the scores with both sides down to 10.

Camavinga, 17, pledged to stay at Rennes on Friday despite reported interest from Real Madrid in the promising midfielder.

Lille meanwhile missed departed striker Victor Osimhen, who last month moved to Serie A side Napoli for a reported 81.3 million euros ($96.4m), with Bamba’s goal the home side’s only shot on target all game.

Earlier Angers began their campaign on the right foot with a 1-0 win at Dijon earned thanks to Ismael Traore’s first half strike.

Ivorian Traore scored the decisive goal after 21 minutes at the Stade Gaston Gerard when he collected Sada Thioub’s shot after it ricocheted out off the post, and slotted home a calm finish which gave the away side all three points.

“I am obviously happy with the result, but also the way we dominated the match. Dijon never really troubled us,” said Angers coach Stephane Moulin.

A bad day for Dijon was made worse by defender Ngonda Muzinga pickin up a thigh injury in the first half, adding to their growing list of absentees.

The opening weekend of the new Ligue 1 season is missing some of its biggest names after Paris Saint-Germain and Lyon went deep in the ‘Final Eight’ Champions League tournament in Lisbon.

A rash of coronavirus cases at Marseille led to their match with Saint-Etienne being postponed.

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