Marseille Reclaim Second Place In Ligue 1 With Toulouse Win

Marseille’s Serbian forward Nemanja Radonjic (R) is congratulated by Marseille’s French midfielder Dimitri Payet (L) after scoring a goal during the French L1 football match between Toulouse (TFC) and Olympique de Marseille (OM) at the Stadium municipal in Toulouse, on November 24, 2019.
Pascal PAVANI / AFP

 

Marseille reclaimed the second spot in Ligue 1 when they won 2-0 at 10-man Toulouse who cracked in the final 15 minutes.

Earlier on Sunday, Bordeaux edged in-form Monaco 2-1 at home to briefly climb into third and Saint-Etienne drew 0-0 at home against Montpellier.

In Toulouse, the home team were reduced to 10 men when right-back Steven Moreira drove his studs into Bouna Sarr’s knee and received a red card after a video review.

Marseille had dominated a scruffy match from the start but showed little inspiration or precision in the attack, even with a man advantage, until the 76th minute.

READ ALSO: CAF Nominates Osimhen, Ndidi, Ighalo For 2019 Mens Footballer Awards

Dimitri Payet conjured the breakthrough. He drew defenders to him then threaded a clever reverse pass to the darting Dario Benedetto who danced past Baptiste Reynet and coolly slid the ball into the goal.

Three minutes later, Toulouse presented Marseille with a second. Left-back Issiaga Sylla drove a clearance into Valere Germain. The ball bounced to Nemanja Radonjic, who advanced into the penalty area and curled a shot into the net.

Marseille climbed to 25 points from 14 matches, eight behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain but one ahead of Angers. Bordeaux and Saint-Etienne are fourth and fifth on 22. Toulouse remains second from bottom.

Depleted Bordeaux, already deprived of defenders Mexer and Vukasin Jovanovic who were both suspended, midfielder Youssef Ait Bennasser, who could not play because he is on-loan from Monaco, lost centre-back Laurent Koscielny to injury on Sunday morning and winger Jimmy Briand during the warm-up.

Monaco, who had climbed away from the relegation zone with three victories in their previous four league games, took the lead against Bordeaux with a goal by Islam Slimani on 15 minutes.

After that, even though the hosts’ fans fell silent in the first half as part of a protest against their owners, the visitors failed to exploit the makeshift home defence.

Instead, Brazilian Pablo levelled with a powerful header from a corner after 29 minutes.

In the 67th minute, Slimani handled while standing in the wall at a free-kick, conceding a penalty and incurring his second yellow card.

Nicolas de Preville converted the spot-kick to give Bordeaux victory.

“There were a lot of players from the starting XI who were not here,” Bordeaux midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni said.

“This shows the strength of character of our team. Some of them didn’t have much playing time this season. They stood up.”

Later on Sunday, Saint-Etienne drew 0-0 at home against Montpellier as the sides managed just two shots on target.

AFP

France Advance Into Euro 2016 Quarter-Finals

Euro 2016, France,Host country France had to battle from a goal down to beat the Republic of Ireland to reach the quarter-finals at the ongoing euro championship.

Ireland got off to a stunning start in the second minute, as Robbie Brady converted a penalty after Shane Long was fouled in the box.

But the French team hit back through Antoine Griezmann, who nodded in the equaliser before driving in the winning goal, both in the second half.

“I knew it was going to be a difficult match, and when Ireland took the lead it made us a bit more uncomfortable in the first half.

They showed a lot of enthusiasm but we had to dig deep, get through the situation and get in front,” France coach, Didier Deschamps, said.

He also explained his half time change which brought in Conman for Kante, “It was to get more presence up front. Ireland were quite deep so we wanted to get Griezmann closer to Giroud, bring on some speed with Coman and use the wings a bit better.

“But above all, to get more presence up front – the four attacking players all created chances.”

The Republic of Ireland ended the match with 10 men as Shane Duffy was sent off for a professional foul on Griezmann.

Didier Deschamps’s side will face England or Iceland in the next round at Stade de France on Sunday.

Euro 2016: Deschamp, Payet, React To Second Round Qualification

Euro 2016, Payet, DeschampThe coach of the French national team, Didier Deschamps, has praised the effort of his team in qualifying for the round of 16 of the UEFA Euro 2016 with victory over Albania on Wednesday.

The French coach was happy with the performance of France Midfielder, Dimitri Payet, praising his consistency on the ball and will to fight.

“Payet has become more consistent. He’s always had ability and a lot of confidence. Now, in one-on-one situations and challenges, he’s always up for the fight.

“Clearly we didn’t do everything well. If you’ve seen a team that has, please tell me. We were a bit laborious in the first 45 minutes because Albania were physically fresh,” he told Uefa.com.

Deschamp also commended the style of the Albanians, acknowledging their effort in defence and on the counter attack.

“Albania played with a lot of heart and spirit. They defended well and have the ability to counterattack. We might have scored earlier, we had a lot of chances. While it was goalless it was a good result for Albania. It’s always difficult against teams that keep it tight. Once we finally got going we let loose a bit, albeit slightly late in the day.

“Pogba (being on the bench) was more of a tactical decision. With that system I thought we needed two scrappers in the middle of the park. As for Griezmann, I’m managing him. Neither he nor Pogba is happy. Often players who come off the bench can make the difference. That was the case in the opening match and again tonight,” he said.

Meanwhile, Man of the Match, Dimitri Payet, recognizing his efforts, said the late goals have shown how patient the team is in winning games.

“Once again I made the difference and I’ve known for a while that my island (reunion) is right behind me and there is fervent support for Les Bleus. They’re very proud that France have made it through to the last 16.

“What’s great is that the late goals are nothing new. Since March, when we played the Netherlands, we’ve shown that we can go out and win games late on. We had to be patient”, the midfielder said.

Late goals from substitute, Antonio Griezmann and Man of the Match, Dimitri Payet, against Albania secured France qualification into the second round of the Euro 2016.