Nantes hold Marseille to draw

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> In the latest rounds of matches in the French La Ligue, Marseille came back from two goals down against Nantes to earn a point.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:51 IST
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Marseille travelled to Nantes knowing that they needed a win to keep up the pressure on nearest rivals Monaco. But as the match kicked off it seemed that goalkeeper Fabien Barthez had his mind on other matters as Marseille got off to a shaky start. It wasn't long before Nantes made the breakthrough. Long strike Before the half-hour mark, a long strike by Olivier Quint (14) took a cruel deflection off defender Fridiric Dihu and beat Bartez to put the home side one up. Mid-table Nantes then doubled their lead almost immediately after half-time. Yapi floated in a cross and Quint found himself alone with only Bartez to beat. As the half wore on, Marseille began to gel in midfield and create chances. The fourth-placed team in La Ligue were also desperate to score. Lucky opportunity Luckily for them an opportunity arose from a clumsy clearance and Benoit Pedretti fired in an unstoppable effort - Mikael Landreau didn't stand a chance. Twelve minutes later they worked the ball neatly around the defence to set up Sergio Koke. Landreau did well to get a hand to it but not enough to deny Marseille their equaliser and a point. But with their keeper Bartez now out for three months they needed - and would surely have expected - to win against Nantes and collect the three points to keep up with nearest rivals Monaco. Coach Philippe Troussier's side, without a win in five games, are now out of the title race. They trail Lyon by 13 points with four games to play. (AP)