Lyon and Bordeaux secure wins
Lyon returned to the top of Ligue 1 with a 2-1 win over Troyes on Saturday, while Bordeaux beat Rennes 2-0.
Following Paris Saint-Germain's draw with Ajaccio on Friday, Les Gones had Maxime Gonalons (11) and Samuel Umtiti (75) to thank for the goals that took them two points clear of the capital club.
Defeat for second-bottom Troyes, who replied through Benjamin Nivet in the 38th minute, leaves them six points adrift of safety after one win in 11 matches.
Yoan Gouffran (57) and Henri Saivet (66) scored the goals as Bordeaux defeated Rennes 2-0. Rennes went into the game in fourth place and looking to close the gap on the top three but Bordeaux had other ideas to record their first win since mid-November.
Gaetan Charbonnier's late double lifted Montpellier to their fourth straight home win with a 2-0 triumph over Lorient. Charbonnier struck 11 minutes from time and again at the death to condemn Lorient to a first defeat in six on their return from the winter break.
The win takes Montpellier into eighth, two points behind Lorient who drop to sixth.
Managerless Nancy came from behind twice to earn an impressive 2-2 draw against Lille. Ligue 1's basement club went into the game winless in the league since the season's opening day and having been rocked by the resignation of coach Jean Fernandez.
Head of youth Patrick Gabriel stepped in as caretaker but had just one training session with the team, and saw his charges fall behind after only a minute to Nolan Roux's goal. But Romain Grange equalised and, after Dimitri Payet restored Lille's lead, Thomas Ayasse volleyed a second leveller.
The draw leaves Lille with only two wins in eight games, denting their European ambitions, while Nancy are now seven points adrift of safety after a seventh draw in eight league games.
Struggling Evian had goalkeeper Bertrand Laquait sent off early on as they slipped to a third straight loss in a 2-0 reverse at home to Brest.
The hosts were reduced to 10 men after 14 minutes when Laquait conceded a penalty for bringing down Eden Ben Basat when through on goal. Ben Basat took the spot-kick himself, beating replacement keeper Stephan Andersen.
Evian did well to stay in the game despite being a man down, but Bruno Grougi added a second at the death to seal Brest's win.