Lyon won their fifth straight match on Sunday, as they downed Guingamp 3-1 and took provisional possession of second place in Ligue 1, ahead of the clash between Paris Saint-Germain and Marseille.
PSG could retake second place, and close within a point of the top if they can beat arch rivals and leaders Marseille in the showpiece match later on Sunday at the Parc des Princes in the capital.
Also on Sunday, Monaco held on for a 1-1 draw at Saint-Etienne despite finishing the match with ten men in a stormy encounter at the Geoffroy Guichard stadium.
And Reims extended their unbeaten run to five matches with a 2-0 victory over Lille, who conversely now haven't won in the league in five outings.
Lyon are unbeaten in nine league matches and within two points of Marseille as the Ligue 1 race tightens up.
Alexandre Lacazette went top of the Ligue 1 scoring charts with 11 goals as he opened the scoring in the eighth minute with a back post header from Nabil Fekir's cross.
Fekir doubled the lead on 20 minutes after converting on the slide a low cross from Christophe Jallet.
At that point Lyon seemed in cruise control but they needed Fekir's second goal, three minutes from time, to finally steady their nerves after Guingamp's fightback.
The Cup holders pulled a goal back on the stroke of halftime as Sylvain Marveaux's free-kick came back off the bar and hit Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes before going in.
Under steady rain at Saint-Etienne, Lacina Traore saw his shot deflected past Stephane Ruffier to put Monaco 1-0 in front after just 17 minutes.
However Saint-Etienne, were handed the first of two dubious decisions on 58 minutes, when Dutchman Ricky van Wolfswinkel was allowed to run clear despite being blatantly offside and he gratefully tucked away the equaliser.
Monaco suffered more bad fortune when they were reduced to ten men with 19 minutes left when Tiemoue Bakayoko was shown a second yellow card for a light brush against a Saint-Etienne player that even had the home players appealing to the referee for leniency.
However they held on for a point that keeps them unbeaten in five and joint seventh, while Christophe Galtier's men remain sixth but still in touch with the leading pack.
"We didn't create a lot of chances and we were lucky enough to take the lead but we weren't able to protect the advantage," said Monaco playmaker Jeremy Toulalan.
"We've being playing some good matches and we might have lost this one a while ago but it's a good draw and now we just have to push on and hope for better results." he added.
Reims piled more pressure on underfire Lille coach Rene Girard as they sent the northerners to a fourth defeat in five league matches.
Sebastien Corchia conceded a 26th minute penalty, and was shown a straight red as last man back, before Cameroon striker Benjamin Moukandjo slotted home the spotkick to put the hosts 1-0 up.
Seven minutes later Aissa Mandi doubled the advantage as the Algerian scored a rare goal from his right back position to help Reims climb into the upper half of the table.