OM - Lille (2-1): Victory at home!
The return of Benedetto and González
Sitting out due to suspension against Monaco in the League Cup BKT on Wednesday, Darío Benedetto, the scorer of five goals this season, returned to the starting lineup on Saturday against Lille. In a 4-3-3 formation, the Argentinian striker was flanked by Dimitri Payet on the left and Bouna Sarr on the right. Valentin Rongier, Morgan Sanson and Boubacar Kamara, as the No. 6, filled out the midfield. In defense, Álvaro González, who returned from injury, made his return in the centre alongside Duje Ćaleta-Car. André Villas-Boas lined up Jordan Amavi as left-back and Hiroki Sakai on the right side. Captain Steve Mandanda held the OM goal.
A dominant first half
From the start of the first half, Villas-Boas’s Olympiens pressed Lille. A high-energy OM played high and had the majority of the ball. The Marseillais applied pressure to Christophe Galtier’s Lille via a free kick by Dimitri Payet (14'), a headed shot by Boubacar Kamara on corner (16') and a shot by Valentin Rongier (21'). Four minutes later, on a Dimitri Payet cross, Bouna Sarr fired another low shot from inside the penalty area but hit the post (25’). The pace then dropped and both teams returned to the locker room even and scoreless.
A second half goal-shower
The second period started strong for Villas-Boas’ OM. Mike Maignan mishandled the ball on a free-kick by Dimitri Payet and Boubacar Kamara left it for Morgan Sanson - who shot with his right foot. The midfielder opened the scoring (1-0, 47'). Lille answered with a header by Benjamin André but Steve Mandanda denied it (49'). Bouna Sarr went high in attempt of doubling the lead (60').
Gabriel Dos Santos Magalhãe placed the ball into his own net with an own-goal, after an aerial duel with Dimitri Payet (2-0, 79'). But Lille reduced the lead with a goal by Bakary Soumaoro (2-1, 83'). The score did not change through the last moments and OM emerged victorious!
Climbing the table
Thanks to this win, OM is temporarily in the top-3. With 19 points, André Villas-Boas’ Olympiens moved into third place.
Focus on Lyon
After this victory, the next match for OM is at home vs. Lyon on Matchday 13 in the Ligue 1 Conforama. André Villas-Boas’ Olympiens will continue to work hard to prepare for the showdown at the Orange Vélodrome. OM will want, as against Lille, to win again against a direct competitor at the top-3.