First win for Sochaux
Sochaux beat Valenciennes 2-0 to pick up their first Ligue 1 of the season on Saturday night.
Last Updated: 28/09/13 9:47pm
Triggered by the midweek resignation of their coach Eric Hely and a warning from club president Laurent Pernet that Sochaux are in an "emergency" situation, the team at the foot of the table won their first Ligue 1 match of the season on Saturday night.
Pernet had delivered a speech to the underperforming players that was designed to be rousing, after seven games without a win, and it had the desired effect as Sochaux raced into an early two-goal lead and clung on.
Small steps, but Sochaux are now off the bottom, with Valenciennes falling beneath them.
Striker Cedric Bakambu and defensive midfielder Carlao were the scorers of those goals that lifted the pressure on the home players in front of a Stade Auguste Bonal crowd that was demanding a sign of life from the team.
Daniel Sanchez, the Valenciennes manager, may now start to feel the kind of pressure that prompted Hely to walk from Sochaux in the aftermath of Wednesday evening's 5-1 defeat at promoted Guingamp.
Reports in France prior to the trip to Montbeliard claimed Sanchez's position could be endangered in the event of defeat.
In the absence of Hely, who is set to assume a lower-profile job in the Sochaux coaching ranks, from which he emerged, the home side were led in their eighth Ligue 1 appointment of the season by assistant coach and long-serving former player Omar Daf.
Rare Sochaux celebrations broke out when Roy Contout broke through the first lines of defence and fed Bakambu by the penalty spot for a right-footed strike that beat Nicolas Penneteau.
The goal arrived in the 12th minute, and a second arrived just six minutes later when Rafael Dias swept over a corner from the right and Carlao rose above the defence to head in.
For Valenciennes, Mathieu Dossevi threatened just after the half-hour mark, but Sochaux were in no mood to surrender their lead.
Bakambu drew a fine stop from Penneteau early in the second half, and that sparked Valenciennes to life, with David Ducourtioux freeing Dossevi who curled a right-footed shot against the crossbar.
With time running out, Dossevi was again in the thick of the action in the attacking third for Valenciennes. Played in by Opa N'Guette, he cracked a right-footed shot that was heading for the target but Sochaux defender Lionel Zouma deflected it wide for a corner.