There was no comeback this time as Jorge Sampaoli experienced his first defeat as Marseille coach, with a thumping 3-0 loss at Nice.
Sampaoli won his first two matches with late goals but Nice held firm on Saturday after midfielder Khephren Thuram-Ulien, the son of famed France defender Lilian Thuram, headed home in the 33rd minute.
Nice doubled their lead with around 20 minutes left when Marseille botched a throw-in near their goal, and Amine Gouiri robbed the defence before slotting an angled shot through goalkeeper Steve Mandanda’s legs.
Midfielder Alexis Claude-Maurice wrapped it up in the last minute as Marseille dropped behind Lens to sixth place, while Nice climbed up to 10th.
Rennes won their second straight match under new coach Bruno Genesio, beating Metz 3-1 away.
It enabled them to leapfrog Metz into seventh place – one point behind Marseille – to boost their chances of clinching fifth and a Europa League spot next season.
Winger Martin Terrier set up Belgian forward Jeremy Doku in the 18th minute – the 18-year-old’s first goal in 26 games since joining the Brittany club for 26 million euros ($A40 million) from Anderlecht last October.
Terrier made it 2-0 from the penalty spot in the 37th minute, and Doku’s big day was spoiled when he was sent off in the 51st for a dangerous tackle.
Striker Serhou Guirassy made it 3-0 in the 88th and Papa Yade grabbed a consolation goal two minutes later.