Dijon v OM Match Preview
Time: 19:00 (18:00 UK)
Venue: Stade Gaston Gerard, Dijon
Week 12 sees the teams positioned 12th and 13th in the Ligue 1 table meet, as Marseille travel north to take on Dijon. Dijon have started the season quite well and have already won 1 more game than their opponents Marseille, having beat Lorient (2-0), Evian (1-0) and Brest (1-0). This coupled with their encouraging recent performances against Montpellier and PSG in the league and their surprise defeat of PSG in the Coupe de la Ligue, make Dijon a more than formidable opposition, especially on their own territory.
Having recovered from their opening day defeat at the hands of Stade Rennes, Dijon have won 2 and drawn 1 of their home games, whereas on the road this season Marseille have only managed to pick up 3 points from a possible 15.
Since the problems before, during and after Marseilles’ Champions League game against Arsenal, OM have managed to string together two wins in a row, beating AC Ajaccio, 2-0, and RC Lens, 4-0 in the Coupe de la Ligue. Having only beaten newly promoted Evian and Ajaccio in their league campaign, OM will hope to make it 3 wins in a row, and 3 out of 3 against the ‘new-boys’ whilst picking up their first away win of the season.
After fielding a 4-4-2 formation against Ajaccio and RC Lens, the suggestion would be that Didier Deschamps continues with this formation, looking to build on the confidence gained from the previous two games, ideally keeping the team as similar as possible to maintain some continuity, something that OM have lacked this season. There are some issues around some players being fit for this game, with Gignac overcoming a stomach issue picked up earlier in the week. (Possible line up: Mandanda – Fanni, NKoulou, Diawarra, Morel – Cheyrou, Lucho, Amalfitano, Valbuena – A.Ayew/Gignac, Remy)
As mentioned earlier, Dijon will look to build on the confidence gained from beating league leaders PSG in the Coupe de la Ligue earlier this week. Not only did they beat one of the favourites to win the competition, they overcame a 2-0 deficit to win 3-2. Dijon can call on a number of players to create and put away chances such as top scoring midfielder Corgnet, as well as strikers Jovial, Mandanne and Thil. OM would do well to overrun the midfield and allow very little of Dijon’s play to get through into their attacking third, playing a possession game that has worked well in recent games. This will restrict a Dijon team whose goals have rarely come from well worked creative chances, 4 of their last 5 goals have come from either set pieces or from something that could be labelled as a defensive error (something OM fans know all about).
Dijon generally start games strong, scoring 4 of their goals this season inside the first 15 minutes and it is important that Marseille dictate the pace of the game early on and use their experience to frustrate the team and the home crowd. Dijon manager, Patrice Carteron, will be fully aware that Dijon tend to struggle in the second half of games and have let in 16 goals during the second period this season. Marseille should therefore look to exploit a tiring Dijon team by making some attacking changes in the final half hour of the game, perhaps using the pace and unpredictability of Jayew if he doesn’t start the game.
My prediction for this game is a 3-1 win for Marseille.
Swanny (@OMarseilleUK & @Andrew_Js3)