Excellent intentions and intensity, but too fair in the finish, Marseille captured a frustrating point at the Vélodrome this Sunday evening against a completely overwhelmed PSG (0-0). In its dynamics of recent weeks, Paris has played very badly in football. But will not leave, this time, not with the three points.
By Alexandre Aflalo, at the Orange Vélodrome
OM 0-0 PSG
The pyrotechnic festival and the concert of incessant firecrackers on the forecourt of the Vélodrome, crowded with people more than three hours before the kick-off, left little room for doubt if there was any: this Sunday, in Marseille, was not not a day like the others. Three years later, Paris Saint-Germain was back in a full Vélodrome for the 101e Classic of French football. Three long years of waiting without screaming at the death of the hated rival in a boiling stadium that the people of Marseille give more good to catch up in voice possible, a match whose stake is a mystery to no one: this season more than ever , Paris is the team to beat. To be cut down, even. A moribund PSG in the game lately despite positive results, facing an OM who has found – especially thanks to Jorge Sampaoli – its fury of yesteryear? Drawn match, without but.
Intensity and lack of solutions
All this context promised a poster as explosive on the field as in the stands. It was not lacking: less than five minutes of play, and the Olympians are already lighting the first match with a free kick from Payet who finds Milik, clumsy at six meters (4e). The Marseillais emit in this match an intensity which disturbs the Parisians, always in difficulty vis-a-vis well organized and energetic collectives. However, they believe they see the success on their smile: on a good deep ball from Di María, Neymar shoots a half-volley that bounces on Luan Peres before landing in the back of the game … goal refused, for offside ( 14e). Marseille blows a big blow, then exults: behind Nuno Mendes, Lirola rushes forward and finds Milik who deceives Navas … rebelotte, offside (20e). A goal denied everywhere, ball in the center. Despite favorable statistics (six shots, four on target, 56% possession), the Parisian attacks – often launched by long strides by his soloists – come up against the very tight mesh of the Marseille defense. In a first period of great physical intensity, Marseille won 58% of its duels and succeeded against the prestigious Parisian offensive quartet. Guendouzi and Rongier, in particular, are everywhere. And, as a bonus, a Pau López while vigilant and essential last bulwark to save OM on rare clear occasions (31e, 32e).
The red of Hakimi and the Parisian deliquescence
Back from the locker room, Marseille leaves with the same energy. And ended up cracking Paris, in counterattack. While Ünder is thrown alone towards the corn of Navas, he is pushed in the back by Hakimi at the entrance of the box. The referee initially said nothing, then after watching the video, decided to give the free kick to Ciel et Blanc and the Moroccan Agent to the locker room.If Payet’s attempt goes over, Paris is now ten sided. to Marseillais who have an insatiable slab. Mauricio Pochettino logically decides to cut off his attack with a “fantastic”, to bring in Thilo Kehrer. The Marseillais only lack one goal, neither Rongier – with a head unfortunately too uncrossed (65e) – nor Konrad – clumsy on the fly (77e) – do not offer them. To say that Paris is suffering is an understatement: prostrate in front of their surface, Parisians are taking in the waves without being able to retaliate. Muzzled in front by an imperial Marseille defense – we note in particular a sumptuous tackle from Saliba, on a good call from Mbappé (83e) – and choked behind, Paris once again returned a sloppy copy. Without, for once, reaping a positive result. Until the end, Marseille will have pushed, tempted, scratched the balloons in the feet of amorphous Parisians, gives hope to this Vélodrome. Fans of the half-full glass will see an excellent 0-0 at the end of a committed match. The others, a match that Marseille would undoubtedly have deserved to win.
Olympique de Marseille (4-2-3-1): López – Rongier (De la Fuente, 70e), Saliba, aleta-Car, Peres – Guendouzi, Kamara (Gueye, 70e) – Lirola, Payet, Ünder (Gerson, 78e) – Milik (Dieng, 78 years olde). Coach: Jorge Sampaoli.
Paris Saint-Germain (4-2-3-1): Navas – Hakimi, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Mendès – Verratti (Gueye, 45e), D. Pereira – Di María (Kehrer, 60e), Messi, Neymar (Wijnaldum, 83e) – Mbappé. Coach: Mauricio Pochettino.
By Alexandre Aflalo, at the Orange Vélodrome