Marseille Taste Defeat for the First Time This Year in Brest
Marseille lost for the first time in 16 games away against Brest. It wasn’t the best of spectacles and the winning goal came courtesy of Brest defender Paul Baysse after 16 mins. Overall, OM were flat and lacked energy, generally tuning in a poor performance. Some might argue they deserved a draw, but definitely no more than that.
The key turning point of the match was actually as early as just 30 seconds into proceedings. From a seemingly harmless position, Brest defender Martial slipped and gave the ball to Brandao. The OM striker found himself well into the penalty area and though on goal, but he was taken from behind by Martial and the danger was averted. Replays were conclusive, Martial didn’t get any of the ball but plenty of Brandao. He should’ve been sent off for a last man foul and a penalty awarded to OM.
However, referee Rudy Buquet completely bottled it and awarded nothing. I’m pretty sure that if this had happened later on in the match he would have given the penalty and red card, but after 30 seconds he wasn’t going to commit himself into making such a big decision. In my opinion Buquet is a complete fucking disgrace to French referees here. A lot of refs in France have been under pressure recently and there always seems to be a barrage of poor decisions these days. This incident is hardly going to help things and was a total joke. Seriously I’m bitter about this because it was completely match changing.
Following this incident, it was Brest who were the better team and they came close twice. First, Khaled who was quite impressive in this game showed some fine individual skill to eventually find a way into the area and unleash a decent shot. OM keeper Mandanda made a great save to deny him, and just a few minutes later he was in fine form again, this time to prevent Lesoimier.
But from the resulting corner Brest took the lead. Once again, OM were completely all at sea from a set piece situation and left Paul Baysse free in the area to head home into the net. It looked like it was Nkoulou’s responsibility to mark him and for once he was out of position a bit and outmuscled. But all in all, OM were pretty slack here and organisation was poor. THIS NEEDS TO BE SORTED OUT because it was the exact same against Valenciennes the week before.
OM gradually became the better team towards the end of the first half, but couldn’t find an equaliser. The best chance fell to Brandao, who had a free header about 5 yards out. He failed to find the target though and hit the post with his effort. I have been a big supporter of Brandao since his arrival back to the club, but he simply want good enough here and it was a return to his shit old ways.
The 2nd half got off to a quiet start, and indeed it was actually Brest who were first to threaten in the 54th minute. Coulibaly found himself through on goal but again Mandanda was on hand to make an impressive stop to keep the score-line at 1-0. The big turning point of the 2nd half was a superb double save by Brest keeper Steve Elana. He tipped a brilliant long range shot from Fanni onto the post before getting up and denying Cheyrou from close range on the rebound. The OM midfielder should have done better but full credit to Elana who was totally world class in that short phase.
Truth be told, this moment in the game seemed to really knock the stuffing out of OM and they were gutted to have been denied by such a great couple of saves. It took at least 15 mins for the visitors to get their mentality back on track and become threatening again. Around this phase of the game, some tiredness and lack of energy also appeared to affect the OM players, perhaps a by-product of the midweek CL match against Inter. Deschamps brought on Andre Ayew for the ineffective Brandao, but then also surprisingly took off Amalfitano (who had been one of the better creative players) and replaced him with Andre-Pierre ‘fat bastard’ Gignac.
Quite a few long shots came firing in and there were occasional decent opportunities, but nothing too major. As you would expect, OM piled on the pressure late in a desperate search for an equaliser which was ultimately not to come. It wasn’t for lack of trying in stoppage time though. First, Andre Ayew was denied when his header was saved by the impeccable Elana who tipped it over the bar. From the resulting corner, Rod Fanni sent a superb header of his own which seemed destined for the net. Finally, Elana was beaten but Ben Basat made a brilliant goal line clearance to keep his side ahead.
There was one last gasp shot which came to nothing and so Brest held on to claim a famous and what must be classed as a massive victory for them in the battle to survive. OM just weren’t good enough here, and whilst maybe didn’t deserve to lose, there were plenty of worrying signs. There’s no doubt that the Inter game has had an affect both on this match, and the previous ligue game at home to VA, but it’s still no excuse. An incredibly hectic period of matches is coming up soon, so OM had better get used to rotating the squad AND getting results in the process.
The final word has to go to referee Rudy Buquet here though. Had he done his job properly then the outcome of this match would’ve likely been very different. What a total disgrace and shocking decision to let Martial off the hook in the 30th second. Thanks a bunch you cunt of a referee…….
Man of the match:- Steve Elana for his match changing world class double save. I take my hat off to him there, it was superb.
Best OM players :-
Mandanda – Ok, so Hugo Lloris might be French captain and have the No1 Les Bleus jersey, but France have one hell of a No2! He proved his class here with 2-3 superb saves.
Fanni – Again, another good performance by him, this time at CDEF. Looked pretty solid and was a danger doing forwards from set pieces. Was very unlucky not to score in this game. He is putting pressure on both Diawara and Azpi for a first choice starting spot at the moment.
Brandao :- It pains me to say this but he was completely shit in this match. Nothing he tried came off, missed a couple of good chances, and just generally looked like a clown at times.
(@MarseilleUK & @meatmansoccer)