Angers see off pitiful Monaco to retake third
Home team Angers took an early lead when Cheikh N'Doye deflected in Romain Saiss's effort after Monaco failed to clear a corner.
N'Doye doubled the advantage before half-time as Angers took utter control, before gloss was added to the scoreline in the second period by Mohamed Yattara.
Monaco stay 21 points behind champions elect Paris Saint-Germain, who play at Saint-Etienne on Sunday night. Angers move, temporarily at least, above Nice and into the third and final Champions League place.
"Today I think we totally failed to turn up," said Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim. "We didn't play with the intensity needed to compete in this league.
"It's difficult to explain. It's not possible to play really well five or six days ago (in a 4-0 win over Toulouse) and then perform like we did today."
In a lively start to proceedings at the Stade Ange Casanova, Bernardo Silva wastefully chipped the ball straight at Angers goalkeeper Alexandre Letellier, while at the other end Billy Ketkeophomphone had a long-range effort pushed wide by Danijel Subasic.
Stephane Moulin's side have been a menace from set-pieces all season and they took a 19th minute lead from a corner.
Visiting stopper Subasic kept out a free header from Romain Thomas, but midfielder Saiss got to the rebound first and his shot flew in via the shin of Angers top-scorer N'Doye.
The Senegalese midfielder has had a fantastic debut season in the top flight and the fortuitous effort was his sixth league goal this term.
Monaco were wearing their training shirts as all three of their kits clashed with Angers' home strip, but this was a very competitive encounter and Subasic had to be alert to tip away powerful strikes from Pierrick Capelle and N'Doye.
But it was another scrappy goal that gave N'Doye a brace and Angers a two-goal cushion that they thoroughly deserved.
N'Doye's initial shot was turned onto the crossbar by a stunning Subasic save.
Yattara then hit the loose ball towards the far corner with the aid of a big deflection, and although Subasic got across to save, the Monaco defence watched on as N'Doye prodded in from on the goalline.
The visitors started the second half with far more intensity and attacking verve, and Tiemoue Bakayoko drew a low save from Letellier.
But the hosts made the points safe ten minutes into the second period.
N'Doye had a great chance to complete the first hat-trick of his career but miskicked straight to Yattara, who did the rest with aplomb.Â
Letellier got down quickly to his right to deny Fabio Coentrao as Monaco searched for a consolation goal that would not prove forthcoming.Â
Angers are showing no sign of letting up in the race for Europe as their rivals also keep dropping points.Â
"Lots of people don't like Angers, but I really like them. They're a good side with 37 points, a return which they deserve for the quality they've shown," added Jardim.
A very disappointing Monaco lost this match just when threatening to pull away from the chasing pack, while Marseille were held 1-1 by struggling Lille at the Velodrome on Friday.