Monthly Archives: February 2014

Marseille v Lorient – 22/02/14 – Match Preview

Olympique de Marseille v FC Lorient

22/02/14 – Stade de Velodrome, Marseille

16:00 (UK – Delayed match on BTsport2 23:45)

Marseille face Lorient at the Velodrome this Saturday evening as they keep up their push for the coveted 3rd Champions League spot. With Lille just about hanging on with Lyon and Saint-Etienne all about as inconsistent as ourselves, a good run of wins would do any of these teams wonders in their European challenge.

After the disappointment of the late draw with Saint-Etienne, OM can look forward to difficult games against psg and Nice, so a win on Saturday would help the fact that anything other than a defeat would be a bonus next weekend. This weekend sees Lille face Lyon, whereas ASSE face a testing trip to Bastia.

Jose Anigo welcomes Fanni and Khalifa back to the squad, but is without the suspended Romao.

Likely line-up and formation:

Mandanda

Fanni Nkoulou Mendes Mendy

Ayew Cheyrou

Thauvin Valbuena Payet

Gignac

 

Christian Gourcuff’s men have only won 1 in their lst 6, a 2-0 home victory over Guingamp, and will be looking to secure a top half finish pushing for a possible Europa spot, something that looked just about possible over the Christmas break.

Likely line-up and formation:

Audard

Gassama Kone Lautoa Guerreiro

Jouffre Bourillion Azouni Moonet-Paquet

Alliadiere Aboubakar

 

Results in the past have been varied with OM taking the 3 points 4 times, to Lorient’s 3, another 2 games in Ligue 1 have been draws. The last time we met at the Velodrome, in September 2012, Lorient ran out 3-0 victors. OM and the fans will be hoping to avenge that defeat with a convincing win and display, to take some confidence and fight to Paris next week.

 

Allez l’OM!

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Marseille v Bastia – 08/02/14 – Match Preview

Marseille v Bastia

Stade Velodrome, Marseille

08/02/14 – 16:00 (UK)

After being pegged back twice to a disappointing 2-2 home draw with Toulouse, thus failing to capitalise on other teams’ poor results, OM will be hoping for much better when they welcome Bastia to the Velodrome on Saturday. Excellent performances from Payet, Valbuena and Gignac were overshadowed by defensive howlers and sloppy midfield play, the likes of which will stop us from getting into Europe if it isn’t addressed.

Jose Anigo will welcome Andre Ayew back to the squad in a move that will hopefully give the squad a morale boost too. Although he won’t start the game, the question would be which position he would play when he does return. All 4 attacking players are in fine form, so he may drop into the defensive midfield 2 along with Romao or Lemina, in a position he played well at times last season.

The full squad is: Mandanda, Samba, Diawara, Fanni, Mendes, Mendy, Nkoulou Dja Djedje, Imbula, Lemina, Romao, Valbuena, Bangoura, Gignac, Thauvin, Khalifa, Payet and Andre Ayew.

Likely line-up and formation:

Mandanda

Dja Djedje Nkoulou Mendes Mendy

Romao Lemina

Thauvin Valbuena Payet

Gignac

 

Bastia have won 2 of their last 3 ligue games, against Bordeuax and Guingamp, in  little run of form that has lifted them to 11th in the table, and they will feel quite safe away from the relegation zone right now.

OM’s Raspentino won’t feature in the game through injury, however, ex-OM and journey man Djibril Cisse is expected to start for the visitors. Cisse scored 24 times for OM during his loan and permanent spell at the club, let’s hope he doesn’t net at the Velodrome again.

Marseille v Toulouse – 02/02/14 – Match Preview

Marseille v Toulouse

Stade Velodrome, Marseille

02/02/14 – 20:00 (Live on BTsport2 UK)

Having made hard work for themselves in a win over Valenciennes mid-week at the Velodrome, Marseille will hope to make it 2 from 2 as they face Toulouse at home on Sunday. Goals from our in form duo, Gignac and Thauvin helped OM get past a dogged Valenciennes team and win their game in hand taking them back up to 5th in the table, something that looks a little more respectable compared to 9th place we sat in after Monaco defeat a week ago. Toulouse have only won 2 games since the turn of the year, with their only Ligue 1 victory coming in Bordeaux.

Most OM fans were disappointed with the lack of transfer activity during the transfer window, with Brice Dja Djedje signing from Evian being the only move to strengthen the squad. Considering the loss of Abdallah and Jordan Ayew, our threadbare squad hardly looks any better once you get past a relatively strong starting 11. At least we have managed to keep hold of Nkoulou who had been subject to bids from Napoli.

Jose Anigo will welcome solitary new signing Dja Djedje to the squad, but Morel and Cheyrou will miss out along with Abergel.

The squad for the game is made up of: Mandanda, Samba, Diawara, Fanni, Mendes, Mendy, Nkoulou, Dja Djedje, Tuiloma, Imbula, Lemina, Romao, Valbuena, Bangoura, Gignac, Thauvin, Khalifa and Payet.

It is expected that Diawara will start from the bench and Fanni may make way for Dja Djedje’s debut. OM should be able to find space between 5 man Toulouse midfield and 3 man defence (although this is flexible enough to change as their defencive needs change), the dabger may be that our creative attacking trio may be crowded out through the centre. It is important that Valbuena, Thauvin and Payet support each other and link up through Gignac. Gignac will help pull the defenders wide and out of position allowing the other attackers space to dribble and shoot or win free kicks.

OM need to be wary of losing the ball in our deep lying midfield positions, as Toulouse can then spread the ball wide and break quickly. For this reason it may be better to keep a high defensive line where possible as all 4 defenders have some pace.

Likely line up and formation:

Mandanda

Dja Djedje  Nkoulou Mendes Mendy

Lemina Romao

Payet Valbuena Thauvin

Gignac

 

Allain Casanova will be hoping his squad can improve on their historical record at the Velodrome, having only picked up 4 wins in 36 attempts in Ligue 1, though the last one came in 2012 with a 0-1 defeat for OM. If he is going to succeed in a Toulouse victory he will need to do so without injured Zamiou, Moubandje, Soukouna, Chantome and Ninkov.

Likely line up and formation:

Ahamadi

Aurier Zebina Spajic

Akpa-Akpro Aguilar Regattin Didot Sylla

Yedder Braithwaite

 

A victory for OM is imperative if they are to hope for European qualification this year. 3 points would give them breathing space of 4 points from 7th placed Bordeaux, ad would also set things up nicely for the tough trip to Saint-Etienne in 2 weeks time. The win would also keep OM just in touch with 3rd placed Lille.

Former Marseille man Abdullah came on as a late substitute for Lorient as they held out for an impressive draw against Monaco, who lost ground on leaders psg, who saw off Bordeaux with a 2-0 win on Friday. Jordan Ayew helped Sochaux to only their 3rd victory of the season as they beat Nantes 1-0, to give themselves a glimmer of hope in Ligue 1 survival. Abdallah and Sougou couldn’t help Evian get more than a 1-1 draw against bottom side Ajaccio, Evian now sit 4 points above the relegation zone.