Saint-Etienne salvages draw in game delayed by thrown flares

National Sports

PARIS (AP)Mickael Nade scored an injury-time equalizer as Saint-Etienne came from two goals down to draw 2-2 at home against Angers on Friday in a French league game that was delayed after the host’s angry fans threw flares onto the field to protest the team’s poor results.

The kickoff was pushed back by about one hour after multiple burning flares were thrown from the stands, with both teams returning to their dressing rooms while officials debated whether to call the game off. Fans also unfurled a banner calling for Saint-Etienne coach Claude Puel to be fired, with the team still winless and in last place going into the game.

When the game finally started, Angers took a 2-0 lead after Ismael Traore netted in the 28th minute and Angelo Fulgini added the second in the 56th. But Whabi Khazri curled in a superb free kick for Saint-Etienne in the 61st and Nade delivered the last-gasp equalizer by heading in from close range following a corner.

That led to Puel screaming out loud in delight on the sidelines – although it remains unclear whether the point will be enough to save his job.

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