French champions Lyon saw their hopes of an eighth consecutive crown seriously dashed after a shock 2-0 defeat away to northern side Valenciennes on Saturday.
Valenciennes’ Johan Audel scored a first-half brace in a match in which Lyon failed to put their title credentials on display, leaving them at the mercy of results elsewhere.
But even before league leaders Marseille host Toulouse later Saturday, Lyon midfielder Cris all but sounded the death knell for his side.
“As far as the title goes, it’s over for us tonight,” the Brazilian told Canal Plus television.
“All we can do now is concentrate on our last four matches to make sure of our place in the Champions League.”
He added: “We can’t take anything away from Valenciennes. We were pitiful. In the first half we barely got out of second gear, and it was hardly better in the second half.”
Lyon’s seventh defeat of the season means they remain in third spot behind Marseille and Bordeaux, but if Marseille beat Toulouse they will have a nine-point cushion over the reigning champions with four games remaining.
A Marseille defeat, however, would prove a huge boost to Laurent Blanc’s Bordeaux side who had a two-point deficit to the league leaders ahead of their hosting of Sochaux on Sunday.
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