2014/2015 French Ligue 1
  • Pablo Chavarr√≠a (4')

Chavarria secures narrow Lens win

Lens ended a difficult campaign on a high after an early Pablo Chavarria goal earned them a 1-0 home victory over Nantes on the final day of the league season.
Chavarria's close-range strike after four minutes proved to be the only goal of the game and earned Ligue 1's bottom side just their seventh victory of the season and saw them halt a run of five successive defeats.
Nantes' third defeat in four matches saw them finish the season in 14th place after Caen beat Evian to move above Michel Der Zakarian's side.
Lens went into their final game of the season knowing that, regardless of the result, they would finish the campaign propping up the table.
With nothing more to lose, the hosts started brightly and the Stade de la Licorne faithful were rewarded for their unwavering support when Chavarria prodded home the game's only goal after four minutes.
Wylan Cyprien went on a mazy run down the right flank and delivered a cross into the penalty area which his midfield partner Chavarria gratefully deflected past Nantes goalkeeper Remy Riou and into the net from close range for his seventh league goal of the season.
Nantes could have been level after 10 minutes when Lens keeper Samuel Atrous punched a free-kick into the path of Yacine Bammou but he could only fire over the bar.
Despite conceding the early goal Nantes were the better side and Yacine Bammou and Johan Audel proceeded to waste further decent chances, with the latter firing over after meeting Leo Dubois' teasing cross.
Bammou had another clear-cut chance shortly before half-time when a poor defensive clearance fell to him but his half-volley was turned over the bar by Atrous.
Nantes seemed fired up in the second half but another chance went begging when Johan Audel fired over the crossbar from a promising position after some neat footwork had afforded him space in the penalty area.
Nantes midfielder Jordan Veretout tried his luck from distance but his powerful 25-yard effort was gathered at the second attempt by Atrous.
Lens weathered the onslaught and could have extended their advantage in the closing minutes but, although he did well to beat Issa Cissokho, Jean-Philippe Gbamin's shot was comfortably saved by Riou.
But it mattered little as Antoine Kombouare's side held on to win and conclude what has been a disappointing campaign on a positive note.