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Marseille – Evian – 17/08/13 – Match Preview

17/08/13 – 16:00 (UK – Replayed 18/08/13 08:00 on BTsport 1)
Ligue 1 – Game 2
Marseille – Evian Thonon Gaillard
Stade Velodrome, Marseille

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After an incredible start to their first Ligue 1 game of the season against Guingamp, Marseille take on Evian in their first home game. With all 3 of Baup’s new signings hitting the ground running in Brittany, the coach will look to repeat last season’s early run of form and make it two wins from two. Having avoided relegation by 2 points last season, Evian will hope to secure safety a little earlier, although they have lost some of their more high-profile players and struggled to replace those. The Stade Velodrome has continued to be revamped over the summer and will have an increased capacity of around 48,000 for this game. The game is close to a sell-out and FIFA president Michel Platini also be in attendance.

Marseille

Lacking match practice, Elie Baup again indicated that it would be unlikely that Saber Klhifa would feature on Saturday, this time against his former club, instead it he may be handed his debut in week 3 against Valenciennes. Baup should have no injury concerns as it would appear that Mandanda, Valbuena, Payet, Nkoulou and Kadir all returned from their international duties unscathed.

Continuing to work on his fitness, Lucas Mendes may be deemed fit enough to start, especially given the rather shaky performance from the defensive partnership of Nkoulou and Diawara last week. There is no reason for Baup to make any other changes to the squad or formation. He should certainly encourage even more of the creativity that Valbuena and Payet showed last week, as well as some of the link up play with Gignac, and encourage APG’s shots from directly from cutting in if OM are struggling to find the ETG goal.

Full Marseille squad is: Mandanda, Samba, Diawara, Fanni, Mendes, Mendy, Morel, Nkoulou, Amalfitano, Cheyrou, Imbula, Kadir, Romao, Valbuena, J. Ayew, A. Ayew, Gignac, Payet.

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Evian

Avoiding relegation again will probably be the main target for Pascal Dupraz and his side this season. Having lost Yanick Sagbo and Saber Klhifa over the summer, ETG’s main replacements are Benezet from Ligue 2’s Nimes and our very own Sougou (the latter only on loan). Sougou is not expected to play and Brice Dja Djedje is suspended, so they will primarily rely on the striking partnership of Berigaud and Barbosa.

Marseille will have to be wary of Evian’s attacking threat from set pieces, especially given their weaknesses in previous seasons along with last week’s poor 2nd half showing against Guingamp. Evian’s opening goal in last week’s 1-1 draw with Sochaux came from a deep free kick with Ehret managing to comfortably direct the ball past Pouplin.

The full Evian squad is made up of: Laquait, Hansen, Sabaly, Ehret, Wass, Angoula, Mensah, Mongongu, Cambon, Sorlin, Koné, Barbosa, Benezet, Blanc, Bertoglio, Bérigaud, Sougou, Nsikulu. Although Sougou is not expected to start there are of course worries that he may come off the bench and cause problems. After only signing in January for OM, his loan move to ETG came as a shock to most given that he impressed in his limeted opportunities last year, so Sougou certainly has a point to prove and will hope to impress infront of the OM croud and Elie Baup.

Expected line up and formation:photo

Summary
With nothing to lose from the game there is the chance that Evian could prove to be a tricky opposition on Saturday, however, the same could have been said before the Guingamp game. Marseille comfortably demonstrated their class and ability in the 1st half against Guingamp, the main difference in the second half being Marseille’s slack passing, performance and defence. If OM perform well in both halves then a home win should be on the cards.

Stats
Marseille have won their last 8 home games.
Evian have lost their last 4 away games.
In the 6 games that Klhifa did not feature in for Evian last season they didn’t win a game, losing 4 and drawing 2.
Marseille have won both games between these 2 teams at the Velodrome (2-0 and 1-0)

Other Ligue 1 games
Fri 16th
Sochaux – Lyon
Sat 17th
Toulouse – Bordeaux
Saint-Etienne – Guingamp
Reims – Lille
Nice – Rennes
Bastia – Valenciennes
Sun 18th
Monaco – Montpellier
Lorient – Nantes
psg – Ajaccio

Allez l’OM
Swanny (@MarseilleUK & @aswanny84)

Evian v Marseille – Match Preview – 10/02/13

ETG v OM Preview

Sun 10/02/13 – 13:00 (UK)

Parc des Sports d’Annecy, Evian

Ref. – Antony Gautier

Background –

After suffering a shock home defeat to bottom club AS Nancy last week, Marsreille will be looking to show a little more bottle this week against the team sitting 16th, Evian Thonon Gaillard. The shock defeat added to the surprise defeats OM have suffered at the hands of Troyes and Sochaux this season and meant that they missed the opportunity to go level on points with Lyon, and lost ground on Ligue leaders psg. Evian have so far failed to win in 2013 but have drawn 3 in a row against Lyon, Ajaccio and Bastia allowing them to climb out of the relegation zone.

Marseille –

Away from the pressures of the Velodrome, Marseille have fared better on the road this season, and will look to continue that form as they try to win at Evian for the first time. Last season ex-Marseille man Jerome Leroy scored twice as OM’s mid-season run of form took a dip.

Charles Kabore is still absent on international duty as his Burkina Faso face Nigeria in the African Cup of Nations in South Africa on Sunday. Joey Barton will miss the game through suspension after his red card against Nancy last week and more surprisingly Andre Ayew withdrew late from the squad. Foued Kadir came off the bench against Nancy, and will be pushing for a starting place this week. New signing Alaixys Ramao, from FC Lorient, is also available for selection after returning from the ACon with Togo. Jeremy Morel and Nikolas Nkoulou have been receiving treatment on their respective injuries this week and are still doubts for this game.

The full travelling squad is made up of: Mandanda, Samba, Fanni, Abdallah, Nkoulou, Mendes, Diawara, Aloe, Cheyrou, Romao, Abdullah, Valbuena, Amalfitano, Kadir, J. Ayew, Gignac, Sougou & Jobello.

Possible line up: 4-2-3-1
Mandanda
Fanni, Nkoulou, Diawara, Mendes
Abdullah, Cheyrou
Romao, Valbuena J. Ayew
Gignac

Who are they? –

After promotion from Ligue 2, Evian managed a more than respectable 9th placed finish last season (1 place and 2 points ahead of OM). Their hard working mentality and often exciting counter-attacking play meant they were a difficult team to beat, and although they have not managed to quite match this form and play as much this season, this will be no walk in the park for OM.

Evian’s home record makes worrying reading for ETG fans picking only 2 victories (against Bastia 3-0 and Troyes 2-0). Their specialism for draws(5 at home) is only beaten by Bordeaux who have drawn 6 times at home, so a draw could be a good bet.

Pacal Dupraz will be without Mohamed Rabiu and Jon Mensah who are still on ACoN duties. Brice Dja Djedje and Stephen Anderson who are injured, however, Barbosa is expected to recover in time to play.

Marseille will need to be wary of the ETG counter-attack. This is something that they showed immense vulnerability to against Nancy, and were only let off by ASNL’s rather wayward shooting. With 8 goals between them, Barbosa and Sagbo may not be as forgiving as Apou’o was ;ast Sunday.

Likely starting line-up: (4-4-1-1)Laquait – Mongongu, Angoula, Betao, Wass – Berigaud, Sorlin, Bi, Barbosa – Khelifa – Sagbo

Summary –

Before the winter break this game should have been relatively straightforward for Marseille, however, with a string of inconsistent results and performances it becomes a must win game for both teams. A win for OM keeps them close enough to the top 2 and also keeps them away from 4th placed Bordeaux who have closed to within 4 points of OM. A win for Evian could take them 5 points clear of the drop zone if results go their way.

Predicted score: Evian 1v2 Marseille

Odds (Bet365.com correct at time of publication)

Evian 3.50

Draw 3.20

Marseille 2.15

Allez l’OM

Swanny (@MarseilleUK & @Andrew_Js3)

Other Ligue 1 Fixtures:

psg 3-1 Bastia

Saint-Etienne 4v1 Montpellier

Nice 1v1 Lorient

Valenciennes 2v1 Brest

Troyes 0v0 Sochaux

Ajaccio 1v0 Bordeuax

Nancy 1v2 Reims

Rennes v Toulouse

Lyon v Lille