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Marseille beats Lorient in stoppage time, rival Rennes wins

PARIS (AP) – Spanish right back Pol Lirola grabbed his second goal during injury time as Marseille beat Lorient 3-2 at home on Saturday to maintain its push for a Europa League place next season.

In the early French league game, Rennes won 3-0 at midtable fits of anger to join Marseille and rival Lens in the hunt for fifth place with five games left.

Sixth-place Marseille moved level on points with fifth-place Lens, away to Brest on Sunday, while Rennes is one point behind Marseille in seventh.

Lorient is 17th but has improved in recent weeks and faced a side missing central defenders Alvaro Gonzalez and Duje Caleta-Car through suspension.

That weakness showed on both Lorient goals, which were scored on counterattacks and expertly finished by Nigerian striker Terem Moffi from Yoane Wissa’s astute passes. After Moffi put the visitors 1-0 up at Stade Velodrome in the 18th minute, playmaker Dimitri Payet equalized in the 52nd with a superb right-foot volley from 20 meters after striker Arkadiusz Milik headed the ball sideways to him.

Winger Florian Thauvin set up Lirola with a pass behind the defense, and he finished confidently from 10 meters out in the 55th. But Thauvin’s wild pass from the right flank was intercepted by Wissa in midfield, and he advanced half the field before setting up Moffi’s 11th goal of the season.

In the day’s other game, a vastly improving Rennes made it 13 points from five matches under its new coach Bruno Genesio, who previously managed Lyon before trying his luck in the Chinese Super League with Beijing Guoan. Striker Stephane Bahoken thought he had given Anger the lead in the 44th minute; his effort was ruled out when a video replay spotted a foul on the goalkeeper beforehand.

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