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OM without pity for Villarreal and Marcelino

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OM without pity for Villarreal and Marcelino

Jean-Louis Gasset’s Olympique de Marseille crushed Villarreal (4-0) on Thursday and is close to the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

Published on: 03/07/2024 – 11:11 p.m. Modified on: 03/07/2024 – 11:08 p.m.

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We can no longer stop Jean-Louis Gasset’s OM: for their reunion with Marcelino, the coach symbol of a start to the season where everything was going wrong, the Marseillais swept Villarreal 4-0 on Thursday March 7 and are almost qualified for the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

On Wednesday, Gasset, who has been successful since replacing Gennaro Gattuso, said he wanted to “take a substantial option” on qualification. “For that, we will have to play,” he said. The mission is accomplished and in the desired manner: OM were very good on Thursday and the qualification option is indeed solid.

Before OM took this big step towards the quarter-finals, the Marcelino subject, which had punctuated the pre-match, was quickly dismissed, as soon as the teams were presented. The name of the Spanish technician was whistled very loudly and that of Gasset cheered a little more. No banners or misplaced aggression, case closed.

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On the field, as in August and September, Marseille then found among the yellows this same 4-4-2 with so well drawn lines, which had taken aback and disappointed during Marcelino’s brief stint at OM. And like six months ago, the Spaniard’s game seemed very slow and academic. This time, it was OM who took advantage.

More inspired, more aggressive and faster, Jean-Louis Gasset’s players have in fact swept away in a single period the idea of ​​an uncertain and balanced confrontation. In the 23rd minute, it was Jordan Veretout who opened the scoring from close range and with a header after good work on the right from Iliman Ndiaye and Jonathan Clauss.

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OM coach Jean-Pierre Gasset during the match against Villarreal, March 7, 2024 in Marseille © CLEMENT MAHOUDEAU / AFP

Five minutes later, Yerson Mosquera scored against his side after a general panic in the Spanish defense (2-0, 28th) then, just before the break, Ismaïla Sarr obtained a penalty by once again going too far quickly for the Villarreal rearguard.

Double for Aubameyang

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who now never stops scoring, stepped forward and scored: 3-0 and somersault for the Gabonese, more than ever king of the Europa League.

The first period of the Marseillais therefore looked very proud, especially as the three goals had been scored in front of the children’s corner, these 5,000 members of the city’s sports clubs, who came to fill the suspension of the North stand and who sang “To Arms” almost as loud as the big guys opposite.

Marseillais Jordan Veretout has just opened the score against Villarreal, on March 7, 2024 in Marseille © CLEMENT MAHOUDEAU / AFP

At the very beginning of the second period, OM fell back a little and the “Yellow Submarine” pointed the end of its periscope, but it very quickly plunged back to great depths, sent to the bottom by Marseillais transfigured since the arrival of Gasset.

At the hour mark, as a sign that the tide has indeed turned for OM who were so unlucky at the start of the season, Aubameyang scored a double on what looked very much like a missed cross (4-0 , 59th). Then the Spanish defender Alberto Moreno, who entered at the break, was sent off for two yellow cards and OM were able to calmly lead their boat until the end.

At the end of what is probably its best match of the season, Marseille can still dream of the Europa League, this competition which allowed it to keep its head above water when nothing was going well. Of course, a French club is never safe from a comeback after beating a Spanish club 4-0 in the first leg, but the gap seemed immense on Thursday.

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As for Marcelino, he was undefeated in Marseille, he is no longer.

With AFP

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