Eduardo (right) celebrates with his Ajaccio teammates after equalising against Corsican rivals Bastia

Eduardo (right) celebrates with his Ajaccio teammates after equalising against Corsican rivals Bastia

Ajaccio 1-1 Bastia

Eduardo’s late equaliser earned 10-man Ajaccio a point in the Corsica derby at the Stade Parsemain on Wednesday.

Florian Raspentino gave the visitors the lead on nine minutes before Ajaccio’s Joshua Nadeau was sent off on 62 minutes.

Eduardo’s strike eight minutes from time then gifted relegation-strugglers Ajaccio with a draw, which keeps them in 19th place, while Bastia remain in eighth.

Following trouble in last season’s derbies between the two sides – which included seven red cards on the pitch – the game was contested in a neutral venue behind closed doors.

The empty stadium suited Bastia, and indeed within nine minutes, they were in front.

Ryad Boudebouz forced Guillermo Ochoa into saving his powerful long-range effort, but when the goalkeeper’s clearance fell to Raspentino, the striker steadied himself before driving in his first league goal of the season.

Frédéric Hantz’s side had three further chances to double their lead – with their best opportunity arriving when defender François-Joseph Modesto rattled the crossbar with his header on 42 minutes – but the first period ended 1-0.

Bastia continued to dominate in the second half and should have scored when Raspentino’s shot rebounded off the bar before Milos Krasic drove high on 50 minutes.

The home side continued to struggle creating clear-cut chances, with Ajaccio stringing together 104 passes in the attacking third to their rival’s 192.

And when Nadeau was sent off for a high challenge on substitute Adama Ba 12 minutes later, it looked like Christian Bracconi’s side were heading for their third straight league defeat.

Considering Bastia’s 15 shots on goal to Ajaccio’s four shots, the result seemed a fair reflection of the match.

But, Ajaccio equalised in unlikely fashion when Eduardo drove past Bastia’s Mickaël Landreau eight minutes from time before some last-ditch heroics from Ochoa ensured the point.

Vaishali

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