Two clubs from the south of France and eager to get points on the board for various different reasons clashed at the weekend, and although Nice and Nimes is not a derby it felt like one.
The most important stat though was that Nimes won 3-1, and this was seen a shock for the team who were in 19th place and have won just 6 games this season, indeed this was their first away win this season. It mattered and it mattered a lot and Nice, the home side, lost the chance to break into the top 7 as a result.
Whilst the game was a fantastic result for Nimes, it was pretty much overshadowed by some of the bad tackles going in, and the play acting and it made for a messy affair to watch for the neutral. The game certainly became the most controversial of the weekend with a bad feeling over it. Some would call it passion, but it seemed to go over that limit.
In total 7 cards were shown, which on reflection doesn’t seem like much but given that the first card didn’t appear until the 30th minute then we can see things in a different light. Also it means that there was a card of some description shown every 8 minutes on average.
Nimes’ Pablo Martinez got the ball rolling for roughing earning a yellow card and then just two minutes later it was the turn of Nice midfielder Stanley Nsoki for a bad foul and trip. The second half then exploded just 4 minutes in when Hichem Boudaoui made a bad challenge so bad that he was shown a straight red card and that seemed to set the mood for the game, it is important to note that the match was 1-1 at this time before the 10 men of Nice showed their disadvantage.
In the space of ten minutes there was a further 3 bookings which actually all went to Nimes, he ended up just being that much better, creating the space and finding the gaps to score a further 2 goals.
Patrick Vieira the Nice coach was none too pleased with his side who keep on losing or drawing games just when it looks like they will have a chance to compete for the top 5 places.This time they weren’t outclassed, they just lost their heads, some will argue that the referee was trigger happy showing so many cards but at the same time Nice have history of letting some games get to them when it really matters.
Nice have dropped to 11th place but next week they will face bottom club Toulouse and will be expected to win that game.
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