Montpellier coach Rene Girard was bitterly disappointed after his team fell 2-1 to Rennes in Ligue 1 on Saturday.
The defending champions were condemned to a fifth league defeat of the season, with the hopes of recording back-to-back titles already teetering on the brink.
Girard lamented the poor display of his time, with goalkeeper Geoffrey Jourdren benched after criticising the coach in the 3-2 defeat to Evian before the international break.
“We were ineffective in defence and in attack, we gifted them goals, and it’s a real shame,” Girard said.
“It always comes down to the same thing: if you have to score four goals to win a game on the road, it’s always complicated. The result was in keeping with how our season has been going, and there’s not much to say.
“It’s a shame because we put in a lot of effort and we created chances but in the end it came to nothing. There are many reasons that could explain our shakiness but ultimately we didn’t take our chances when we should have.
“We need to work, work, work. There is no other solution. It’s certain that our match against Nice will be very important – and very tough. We’ll need our players to step up and not back down. We need to get going, and soon.”
Montpellier play Olympiacos in the Champions League in midweek.