Lille win Ligue 1 title on final day as PSG finish second

Club secured the crown for the first time in 10 years

Julien Pretot
Sunday 23 May 2021 22:43
Lille players and staff celebrate their title triumph
Lille players and staff celebrate their title triumph

Lille won their first Ligue 1 title since 2011 as they emerged 2-1 winners at Angers on the final day of the season on Sunday.

Jonathan David and Burak Yilmaz scored for Christophe Galtier’s side to put them on 83 points, one ahead of Paris Saint-Germain, who won 2-0 at Stade Brest.

PSG have won the French top flight seven times since Lille’s last triumph 10 years ago, including last season.

Monaco secured third place with 78 points and a spot in the Champions League despite a 0-0 draw at RC Lens as Olympique Lyonnais slumped to a 3-2 home defeat by Nice to finish fourth on 76 and will enter the Europa League.

Marseille drew 1-1 at Metz after the teams traded penalties deep into stoppage time as they ended up fifth on 59 points to also secure a Europa League place.

Stade Rennes, sixth on 58 thanks to a 2-0 home victory against Nimes, qualified for the Europa Conference League.

Nantes finished 18th after a 2-1 home defeat by Montpellier and go into a playoff against Ligue 2 side Toulouse. Nimes and Dijon were already relegated. Troyes and Clermont have been promoted to the top flight.

All eyes, even those of PSG president Nasser al-Khelaifi through his phone, were on Lille’s game at Angers as a failure to win by the northerners would have handed the capital side another league title provided they beat Brest.

But there was little suspense as Lille were 2-0 up at half-time thanks to David’s cool finish and Yilmaz’s spot kick. Angelo Fulgini reduced the arrears in stoppage time for Angers.

PSG struggled against Brest and were lucky to reach the interval with a 1-0 advantage after Angel Di Maria’s curled corner kick was deflected into his own net by Romain Faivre after Neymar had missed a penalty.

Kylian Mbappe added another in the second half at the end of a sharp counter attack to finish as the season’s top Ligue 1 scorer with 27 goals.

Lille’s compact and efficient style was rewarded at the end of a nail-biting season as the Turkish trio of Zeki Celik, Yusuf Yazici and Yilmaz worked wonders.

Galtier’s side, who were five points behind PSG after 10 games, took the lead at the top for good with seven matches left when Jonathan David earned them a 1-0 win at the Parc des Princes.

They gave PSG a lifeline when they drew 0-0 at St Etienne last weekend, leaving the defending champions one point behind them.

But the consistency of Lille, who were never outside the top three after matchday five, eventually bore fruit.

“It’s a great performance, it’s incredible,” said Galtier, who is expected to leave a team he took over when they were set to battle relegation in 2017.

“It was a long, tough day, we were under a lot of pressure and beating PSG on the last day is outstanding,” said Galtier.

“The credit goes to the players. This team scored points against their title rivals. I can’t forget that they beat PSG away after losing against Nimes at home.

“I love this squad, I love these players.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

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