Red Bull Salzburg 0 - 1 Nice: Alassane Plea earns landmark win for Nice



Posted Friday, October 21, 2016 by PA

Alassane Plea's first-half strike handed Nice their first ever European away victory as they secured a 1-0 Europa League win over Salzburg.

The 23-year-old capitalised on a heavy touch from Salzburg defender Paulo Miranda before scoring as the French side picked up their first win in Group I while the hosts suffered their third straight defeat in the group stage.

Nice, who were without striker Mario Balotelli, and Salzburg were each searching for their first win in Group I after two defeats in their opening games and the visitors could have had an early penalty. Valentin Eysseric went down under pressure from two Salzburg defenders but referee Yevhen Aranovskiy waved play on.

The Ligue 1 leaders took the lead after 13 minutes when Plea caught Miranda in possession to run through on goal and slot past Alexander Walke.

Jonatan Soriano almost equalised moments later when a free-kick found the Spaniard but his low effort was parried onto the post by Nice goalkeeper Yoan Cardinale.

The hosts slowly grew into the game and full-back Stefan Lainer should have levelled on the half-hour mark. The Austrian was found with acres of space inside the box but could only drag his strike wide of the target.

Konrad Laimer had an opportunity to equalise after the break but his near-post header sailed over the bar but Lucien Favre thwarted most of Salzburg's attacks as the hosts were restricted to long-range efforts at goal.

Valentino Lazaro came close to finding the all-important leveller for the hosts when he evaded several challenges from Nice defenders before seeing his shot fly inches wide of Cardinale's post. Minutes later Andreas Ulmer tried an ambitious effort from distance but it never looked to trouble Cardinale as Oscar Garcia's looked lost for ideas at the Red Bull Arena.

Salzburg pushed forward in the last 10 minutes and were almost punished for their efforts when Plea, on the break, dragged his shot wide.

Favre's side had another chance to wrap up victory in the dying moments of the game as Walke parried another Plea effort but Nice held on for all three points while Salzburg sit bottom of the group without a single point.



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