PARIS (AFP) - Lyon jumped four places to eighth in the French top flight on Sunday, their highest position of the season so far, after a 1-0 win at home to an unadventurous Nice side.
Young winger Jeremy Pied put Lyon ahead in the 30th minute when he volleyed in Yoann Gourcuff's cross.
The hosts won a dubious penalty shortly afterwards, after Bafetimbi Gomis went down easily in the box, but Michel Bastos's spot-kick was pushed onto the post by Nice goalkeeper David Ospina.
Pied's goal proved sufficient, however, and allowed Claude Puel's team to close to within three points of leaders Brest and move level on points with champions Marseille, who have a game in hand.
"We delivered a very good first half. It's a pity not to have doubled the score," said Puel. "It's not the first time we had a lot of chances and had to be satisfied with the minimum. But the most important is to have taken the three points.
"It's important to move closer to the summit but for the moment it's not the position which is the most important but the number of points between us from the leaders."
Earlier, a last-minute goal from in-form Brazilian forward Nene earned Paris Saint-Germain a 1-1 draw at Lorient that moved the side from the capital up to fourth.
Kevin Gameiro had already hit the bar for Lorient with a delicate lob before the unmarked Lynel Kitambala pounced at a corner in the 32nd minute to put them ahead.
The visitors carried a consistent threat going forward though, and Lorient goalkeeper Fabien Audard had to produce spectacular saves to keep out headers from Guillaume Hoarau and Mathieu Bodmer either side of the interval.
PSG felt they should have had a penalty when Mevlut Erding fell under a challenge from Jeremy Morel and moments later it took a finger-tip save from Gregory Coupet to deny Sigamary Diarra and keep Paris in the game.
Coupet's save acquired greater significance in the final minute, when Nene controlled Bodmer's header across goal before firing into the bottom-right corner to rescue a point for Antoine Kombouare's men.
"You can see that we never give up and we have a team that hates to lose, which is good," said PSG coach Kombouare.
There were worrying scenes on the PSG bench as France international striker Hoarau collapsed in the aftermath of Nene's equaliser, but he walked back to the changing room unaided after receiving attention from medics.
"Guillaume banged his head in the first half," said Kombouare.
"He carried on playing on the adrenaline but it swelled up. It's better now though."
Liverpool coach Roy Hodgson was at Auxerre's home game with Rennes on an apparent scouting mission but he had to wait until the hosts took the lead in the 67th minute for a disappointing game to come to life.
Slovenian forward Valter Birsa picked the ball up in midfield before jinking past Kader Mangane and bending a sublime shot into the top-left corner with the inside of his left foot.
Rennes hit back immediately, Jires Kembo Ekoko lashing home from close range after his initial header struck the post, but there was a sting in the tale for the would-be league leaders.
Roy Contout charged into the Rennes box in the 86th minute and although he was felled by goalkeeper Nicolas Douchez, substitute Franck Quercia was on hand to tuck home the winner from a tight angle.
Both PSG and Rennes had been hoping to end the day at the head of the division, but instead they swapped places in the standings, with Paris climbing to fourth and Rennes dropping to fifth.
PSG are now two points behind leaders Brest, with Auxerre a further two points off the pace in ninth after their seventh game without defeat.
Brest held onto their lead on Saturday after Nolan Roux's equaliser earned them a 1-1 draw at home to Sochaux.
A first-half hat-trick by Moussa Sow set Lille on the way to a 5-2 win at Caen that sent the northern side up to second, while champions Marseille drew 1-1 at home to Lens and slipped to sixth.
|Coach: C. Puel|
for Michel Bastos 74'
for Y. Gourcuff 75'
for J. Pied 86'
|Colombia Primera A Wrap: Santa Fe, Itagui held at home|
|Serie A Preview: Roma face huge test, Juve host Bologna|
|Liga MX Preview: Cruz Azul out to break Morelia drought|
|MLS: New York Red Bulls 2 Philadelphia Union 1|
|Copa Argentina Wrap: Talleres Cordoba, Defensa y Justicia advance|
|Ancelotti: Barca era not over|
|Martino unwilling to change Barca style|
|Barca confirm Alba hamstring injury|
|Ancelotti delighted with first Real trophy|
|Ki sidelined for up to two weeks|
|Pellegrini: Title race not over|
|Arsenal will drop points, insists Martinez|
|Guardiola hails Bayern fight after reaching final|
|Pulis hails battling Palace players|
|Poyet happy to avoid ´heart attack´|
|Coupe de France: Guingamp 3 Monaco 1|
|City haunted by Liverpool defeat - Pellegrini|
|Copa del Rey: Barcelona 1 Real Madrid 2|
|New MLS franchise for Atlanta|
|Del Nero elected CBF president|
|Premier League: Manchester City 2 Sunderland 2|
|Premier League: Everton 2 Crystal Palace 3|
|DFB-Pokal: Bayern Munich 5 Kaiserslautern 1|
|AFC Champions League Wrap: Pohang Steelers reach last 16|
|Krueger hopeful on Pochettino stay|
|La Liga Preview: Atletico Madrid v Elche|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Ajaccio facing relegation, Monaco aim to cut gap at top|
|Milan announce losses|
|Gradel relishing ´magical´ World Cup experience|
|Sturridge could make Norwich trip|
|Cibulkova, Mayr-Achleitner secure progression in Malaysia|
|Valencia desperate to keep Bernat|
|Lerner praises Cowans, Given|
|Championship Preview: Title glory in sight for Leicester|
|Conte talks set for end of season|
|Arrasate pens new Sociedad deal|
|Malanda to miss Wolfsburg run-in|
|Duff plans for Fulham departure|
|Buffon hails driving force Tevez|
|Garcia happy to wait on contract talks|
|Dejagah calls on fans to help with survival push|
|Kane backs Tottenham´s home-grown talent|
|No offers for Kroos, says agent|
|League One Preview: Brentford on the brink of promotion|
|Aluko admits to doubts over future|
|Hearts closer to exiting administration|
|Callejon: No regrets over Real exit|
|Blanc backed by PSG president|
|League Two Preview: Scunthorpe eye promotion while relegation battle heats up|
|Rode vows to succeed at Bayern|
|Poyet bemoans injury woes|
|Messi is mentally fatigued, says former Barca coach|
|Pellegrini has no regrets over Kompany|
|Olsson confident of fitness ahead of City test|
|Deschamps: We must proves ourselves at the World Cup|
|Milan must trust in youth, says Maldini|
|Martinez: We have that winning mentality|
|Jenkins: We need to survive and regroup|
|A-League Preview: Victory, Mariners favourites to stay alive|
|Beckham´s Miami stadium plans face opposition|
|Casillas, Real full of confidence|
|K-League Preview: Jeonnam, Jeonbuk do battle|
|CONCACAF Champions League: Cruz Azul 0 Toluca 0|
|Dortmund relieved to beat Wolfsburg|
|Arsenal sack Alfaro|
|Mineiro lose patience with tardy Anelka|
|Unfinished Sao Paulo stadium handed to Corinthians|
|Ranieri ignoring speculation|
|Giroud regaining confidence, says Wenger|
|Poyet: ´I´m not going to quit´|
|Allardyce laments costly defensive errors|
|Wenger delighted with Arsenal spirit|
|Coupe de France: Rennes 3 Angers 2|
|Football League Wrap: Barnsley off the bottom, Luton promoted|
|AFC Champions League Wrap: Guangzhou suffer shock defeat, Yokohama beat Jeonbuk|
|Premier League: Arsenal 3 West Ham 1|
|DFB-Pokal: Borussia Dortmund 2 Wolfsburg 0|
|Dyer: Bust-up claims blown out of proportion|
|Gundogan extends Dortmund contract|
|Laudrup backs Messi to shine in Copa final|
|Pellegrini: Liverpool defeat changes nothing|
|I have picked most of Italy squad - Prandelli|
|Mannone must wait for contract talks|
|Alex confident on new PSG deal|
|Wilmots signs four-year Belgium extension|
|Liverpool unites for Hillsborough anniversary|
|Nuremberg confirm Ott signing|
|Amalfitano keen on Premier League stay, says agent|
|Reinartz undergoes Achilles surgery|
|Villa suspend two backroom staff|
|Guardiola reveals Neuer doubt|
|Ancelotti urges Real to cut out errors|
|Fulham have seen the light, says Richardson|
|Chelsea interest in Costa ´normal´ - Simeone|
|Martino: Puyol could return against Real|
|Toure out for two weeks|
|Ronaldo to miss Copa del Rey final|
|Allardyce reveals Drmic scouting mission|
|Iniesta ´convinced´ of Copa del Rey success|
|Hillsborough behind emotional Gerrard reaction|
|Premier League to investigate Cardiff leak claims|
|Juve continue Scuffet praise|
|Returning players can aid survival, says Brunt|
|Martinez cools Barkley rumours|
|We do not go to Munich to swap shirts - Runjaic|
|Pulis eyes permanent deal for Ince|
|Ireland pens new Stoke deal|
|Llorente, Giovinco not getting carried away|
|Allardyce: Emirates expense behind Arsenal slump|
|Gago´s World Cup hopes hit|
|Treat Norwich like best team in the world, says Gerrard|
|Guidolin: Juventus were the better team|
|Sammer issues Bayern warning|
|Montanier warns Rennes ahead Angers clash|
|Berlusconi blocked Chelsea transfer, says Pirlo|
|Guzan: Villa desperate to reward fans|
|Anelka´s future remains unclear|
|Grobbelaar still haunted by Hillsborough disaster|
|Hecking: Wolfsburg can hurt Dortmund|
|Schuster questions Malaga´s effort|
|Paraguay Division Profesional Wrap: Libertad maintain unbeaten run|
|Inter confirm Torres interest|
|Pirlo: I thought about quitting|
|Swansea play down ´brawl´ reports|
|MLS Preview: Red Bulls, Timbers near breakthrough win|
|La Liga: Athletic Bilbao 3 Malaga 0|