David N'Gog scored his seventh goal of the season as Reims took a step closer to safety.
Former Liverpool and Bolton striker David N’Gog has enjoyed something of a renaissance at Stade de Reims this season. Before this weekend, although his team were in the midst of a relegation battle, his five goals had been a highlight of the season in the Champagne region.
On Saturday, Reims travelled to Annecy to take on fellow strugglers Evian Thonon Gaillard, who were just one point behind N’Gog’s team with three games left.
The game was on a knife edge when N’Gog opened the scoring just five minutes before the break. Reims broke down the left, Brazilian midfielder Diego doing all the hard work before laying the chance on a plate for the centre-forward.
Goals before and after the half-time break gave Evian the lead, but N’Gog wasn’t ready to let his team fall to defeat. A Reims free-kick from the right was headed onto the far post, the striker was in the right place at the right time to lash the ball through the crowd and into the net.
The man classed as a flop at Liverpool would make his most telling contribution with five minutes to go. Chasing down a long ball over the top, N’Gog turned it onto his right foot, picked out Benjamin Moukandjo and the Cameroonian forward found the bottom corner.
It was a dramatic come from behind win, but it now moves Reims four points clear of Evian in the final relegation place. Evian escaped on the final day last season, but it doesn’t look like they will be able to recover from this deficit.
N’Gog now has seven goals this season, the third goal on Saturday was his first assist. He may have been a flop at Anfield, but if Reims can survive the drop, he will always be a hero at the Stade Auguste Delaune.