Lille 1-1 Valencia: Ikone stunner rescues precious point for Galtier's men

Jonathan Ikone scored in second-half stoppage-time to rescue a 1-1 draw for Lille against 10-man Valencia in a Champions League group H game.

Lille midfielder Jonathan Ikone scored a brilliant goal against Valencia on Wednesday.   -  Getty Images

Jonathan Ikone scored a dramatic late equaliser to earn Lille a 1-1 draw against 10-man Valencia and the first point of its UEFA Champions League campaign.

After Group H rival Chelsea beat Ajax in Amsterdam, Valencia was on course to join those two sides on six points after three games when Denis Cheryshev gave the visitor a lead it barely deserved in the 63rd minute.

But the game unravelled for Albert Celades' men in the closing stages, with Mouctar Diakhaby's sending-off six minutes from time giving Lille a lengthy period of stoppage time to find an equaliser against depleted opposition.

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That goal arrived courtesy of a moment of brilliance from second-half substitute Ikone, whose shot on the turn keeps hope alive for Christophe Galtier's men with three group games left to play.

Valencia almost drew first blood Kevin Gameiro tested Mike Maignan with a low drive and the visitor controlled the tempo until Lille began to fire just before the half-hour mark.

After Tiago Djalo headed wide and Victor Osimhen blazed a chance over the bar from 20 yards, Yusuf Yazici unleashed a wickedly curling shot that dipped onto the crossbar, leaving Valencia shaken at the interval.

Lille continued to pile forward in the second half but found themselves up against a packed Valencia defence as Yazici fired wide.

Maxi Gomez took a touch too many when Kevin Gameiro put him through one-on-one with Maignan but Cheryshev made no mistake moments later, receiving Gameiro's pass 12 yards out and burying the ball into the bottom corner.

Diakhaby was shown a second yellow card when he hauled down Osimhen and his dismissal revived Lille's intent to find an equaliser that duly arrived.

Jose Fonte pumped a header into the box and Benjamin Andre's knock-down was pounced upon by Ikone, who turned skilfully before lashing the ball high into the net to rescue a precious point for the host.

What does it mean? Group H wide open

Valencia has four points from three games and will fancy its chances of stealing second place from either Ajax or Chelsea, who have both amassed six.

But with three games left to play, Lille will not give up hope as it looks to build on its result here.

Gameiro the creator

Gameiro looked furious when Gomez squandered the chance he laid on for him but he did not let his head drop, instead creating another for Cheryshev who buried it with aplomb.

Bad night for Remy

Galtier sent on Loic Remy in an attempt to help his side convert the chances it was creating but the experienced striker missed the best of the lot before Ikone found the net.

What's next?

Lille entertains Bordeaux on Saturday as it seeks a first Ligue 1 victory in four matches, while Valencia is away at Osasuna in LaLiga on Sunday.

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