UEFA Champions League finalists AS Monaco FC kept themselves in the running for France's second automatic group stage berth with a 3-1 victory at tenth-placed FC Girondins de Bordeaux in their last Ligue 1 match of 2003/04.
The rest of this weekend's fixtures have been put back to Sunday due to France's international with Brazil last night, but the Monaco game was brought forward due to next Wednesday's Champions League final against FC Porto. Monaco went into tonight's game in third place, a point behind Paris Saint-Germain FC, having lost touch with leaders Olympique Lyonnais after a 4-1 defeat by Stade Rennais FC last Saturday.
Lead cancelled out
Monaco's chance of overtaking PSG seemed to fade on 14 minutes when Bordeaux midfield player Albert Riera volleyed in after a Pascal Feindouno cross. But ten minutes later Fernando Morientes - back to fitness after suffering an ankle injury against Rennes - found Shedi Adebayor, who struck the equaliser.
With 14 minutes left Monaco were ahead as Lucas Bernardi found the target, and soon after Shabani Nonda confirmed the victory. Monaco coach Didier Deschamps said: "
It is an important thing to clinch a victory before playing the final. At the interval we were happy with a draw but actually this is quite good. Now we are second and now Paris know what they have to do."
PSG will claim second place back from Monaco with a win at SC Bastia on Sunday, leaving the Champions League finalists to enter next season's third qualifying round unless they beat Porto in Gelsenkirchen. The capital side could even deny Lyon a hat-trick of titles but only if Lyon also lose to Lille OSC and PSG make up a goal difference deficit of 14. The final two of three relegation positions will also be decided.
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