In-form Lyon win again, Saint-Etienne beaten
Lyon forward Jimmy Briand (right) vies with Evian's midfielder Olivier Sorlin during their L1 match at the Gerland Stadium in Lyon on January 26, 201 - by Jeff Pachoud
Bafetimbi Gomis turned and fired in his eighth league goal of the campaign to put Lyon ahead on 19 minutes at the Stade de Gerland, before Evian had Ghanaian defender Jonathan Mensah sent off six minutes prior to the interval.
OL found time to double their lead before the break as Alexandre Lacazette chipped over Bertrand Laquait and into the net.
And Lacazette secured victory inside the final quarter of an hour as he finished after being set up by substitute Jimmy Briand at the end of a breakaway, taking his tally for the season to 12 goals in the process.
Remi Garde's side have started 2014 with six successive wins in all competitions and are now unbeaten in 12 games since a 4-0 defeat away to Paris Saint-Germain at the beginning of December.
That remains their only defeat in their last 18 outings and Sunday's victory saw them move provisionally up to fifth place in the table, three points adrift of Saint-Etienne, who were beaten 2-0 at Bordeaux.
"There are still a lot of matches to play and lots of points at stake but when you go on a run of three (league) victories it gives you a real boost up the table," said Garde, whose side endured a poor start to the campaign.
"We need to keep our feet on the ground and recover well before a programme of eight matches in February, but we are starting to erase all the crap that we produced before.
"What we have done over the last six weeks, we will need to do again three times over. That shows the size of the task. It is also very exciting to be in this position, coming from behind and building up a bit of confidence."
Fourth-placed Saint-Etienne had gone five games unbeaten before their visit to the Stade Chaban-Delmas where, on a dreadful surface, the home side emerged victorious thanks to strikes either side of half-time by Abdou Traore and Brazilian defender Henrique.
Also on Sunday, Monaco begin life without injured top scorer Radamel Falcao when they play host to Marseille at the Stade Louis II.
Claudio Ranieri's side can move to within three points of Ligue 1 leaders PSG, who needed a late Alex equaliser to earn a 1-1 draw away to Guingamp on Saturday.