Paris // Georges-Kevin Nkoudou struck a late equaliser for Marseille in a pulsating 3-3 draw at home to Monaco, as the hosts’ struggles at the Stade Velodrome continued on Sunday.
Marseille, who haven’t won at home in Ligue 1 since mid-September, went in front early through Romain Alessandrini but Almamy Toure equalised shortly after before scoring again just prior to half-time.
Michy Batshuayi, scorer of Marseille’s late winner in Thursday’s 2-1 Europa League victory over Groningen, was on target once more as he levelled six minutes after the restart.
Fabio Coentrao then put Monaco 3-2 ahead but Nkoudou rescued a point for Marseille eight minutes from time.
“Above all there’s a feeling of disappointment tonight,” said Marseille midfielder Lassana Diarra.
“We should have won the match but we didn’t and we once more paid dearly for our defensive errors.
“We showed character but that’s not enough. We didn’t lose but we came back, now we have to win at home.”
The result left Monaco in seventh on 24 points while Marseille, whose winless home run was extended to five matches, climbed one spot to 11th, five points further back.
Three wins in four, all away from home, had allowed OM to ease their way up the table after a dire start to the season and they made a promising start against their southern neighbours, who had lost just one of their last eight in the league.
Elderson Echiejile smacked his clearance straight against team-mate Andrea Raggi with the ball dropping kindly for Alessandrini to put past Danijel Subastic despite a strong hand from the Croatian goalkeeper just 12 minutes in.
But 19-year-old Toure replied for Monaco six minutes later, getting a toe on the end of Coentrao’s whipped free-kick to leave Steve Mandanda helpess in the Marseille goal.
The teenage right-back then netted for the second time six minutes before half-time as he controlled the ball on the halfway line and exchanged passes with Guido Carrillo before capping his marauding run with a cool finish inside Mandanda’s near post.
The lead was short-lived as Batshuayi pounced when Subasic was caught flapping from a corner on 51 minutes, leaving the Belgian striker with a simple tap-in for his 10th league goal of the campaign.
Toure went close to completing his hat-trick just before the hour but was denied by a sharp save as Mandanda got down quickly to his right.
But the Marseille keeper was beaten again on 72 minutes as Coentrao steered a precise header just inside the far post to put the visitors on top for the second time.
However, Leonardo Jardim’s men were unable to close out a fourth win in five as Nkoudou expertly converted a scuffed shot across goal from Lucas Ocampos to earn a share of the spoils.
Earlier, Caen climbed to second after thrashing Bordeaux 4-1.
Syam Ben Youssef gave the visitors an early lead before Damien Da Silva struck twice in the second half with Andy Delort adding a fourth as Enzo Crivelli grabbed a late consolation.
Saint-Etienne bounced back from successive defeats with a 3-0 victory at home to Guingamp courtesy of second-half goals from Romain Hamouma, Valentin Eysseric and Nolan Roux.
On Saturday, PSG ensured that they will finish 2015 at the top of the table as they remained 13 points clear after strolling to a 4-1 win over bottom side Troyes.
Edinson Cavani struck a first-half opener in the first game at the Parc des Princes since the November 13 terror attacks in the French capital.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic doubled PSG’s lead from the penalty spot with Layvin Kurzawa and youngster Jean-Kevin Augustin also on target before Thomas Ayasse pulled one back for winless Troyes in stoppage time.
Follow us on Twitter @NatSportUAE