PARIS ( Associated Press) – Forward Folarin Balogun scored a goal in stoppage time for Reims in a 1-1 draw against French league leaders Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday, a result that moved PSG three points clear of second-place Lens .
Balogun, who made his debut with English Premier League side Arsenal, raced in to collect a long pass with just over 6 minutes remaining. He easily beat veteran defender Sergio Ramos and fired past goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma towards the goal.
It was the 21-year-old striker’s 11th goal of the season, and one less than PSG scorer Neymar.
Neymar netted in the 51st minute to go within reach of his teammate Kylian Mbappe, the top scorer in the French league. Later, PSG midfielder Marco Verratti was sent off in the 59th after a dangerous tackle on Japan full-back Junya Ito. Verratti returned after a thigh injury, coming on in the second half of the game.
Reims extended their unbeaten run to 12 games, including a 0–0 draw against PSG in October, and outplayed their opponents in the first half.
For their part, PSG have won only one of their last four league games, losing twice.
In another game on Sunday, Gaetan Laborde’s goal helped Nice beat Lille 1-0, ending the northern club’s six-match unbeaten run in the French league.
Laborde scored on 34 minutes when Hicham Bounani intercepted a poor pass back and set the ball up for the striker to finish first. Lille had not lost in the league since 30 October.
Meanwhile, Alexandre Lacazette scored his 12th goal of the season as Lyon beat Ajaccio 2–0.
The match ended in heated spirits. Lyon coach Laurent Blanc slapped his Ajaccio counterpart Olivier Pantaloni in the face after a loud brawl. After an exchange of words, Blanc pushed his colleague.
Pantaloni approached the Lyon bench and found himself involved in a clash with goalkeeper Rémy Vercoutre. Security had to intervene to separate them.
In other results, a brace from Dutch striker Thijs Dlinga gave Toulouse a 2–1 win at Strasbourg.
First-half goals from strikers Jérémy Le Douron and Steve Mouny earned Brest a 4–0 win over Angers. Midfielders Franck Honorat and Pierre Lees-Mello scored after the break.
Furthermore, Montpellier secured a crucial 2–0 win against Auxerre in the penultimate to move out of the relegation zone. Both goals were scored by England striker Steffi Mavididi.
Clermont drew 0–0 at home against Nantes.