Friday, February 17, 2012

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18.02. (Sat) 21:00 Olympique Marseille - Valenciennes

Mathieu Valbuena (Marseille)
Mathieu Valbuena (Marseille)



Azpilicueta, N'Koulou, Diawara, Morel
Diarra, Cheyrou
Valbuena, Amalfitano, A. Ayew


Mater, Isimat-Mirin, Gil, Bong
Ducourtioux, Saez, Gomis, 

Kadir, Danic


Marseille have been rocked by the news that top scorer Loic Remy will miss three weeks of action, including Wednesday's Champions League visit of Inter due to a hamstring problem.
The France international picked up the injury in the 3-1 Coupe de France victory over minnows Bourg-Peronnas, leaving Didier Deschamps with much to ponder as he tries to make do with an already limited frontline.
Brandao, who returned from a year-long loan in Brazil last month, scored two goals on Wednesday and seems the obvious choice, with Deschamps able to call up Jordan Ayew who returned from the Africa Cup of Nations and replaced Remy in midweek.
Meanwhile, Andre-Pierre Gignac has returned to training following a spell on the sidelines, with Stephane Mbia out.
Valenciennes themselves have been dealt a blow with the news that Gregory Pujol will sit out the trip to Stade Velodrome despite returning to light training after suffering a torn hamstring in the last few weeks.
Consequently, Carlos Sanchez returns after missing through injury for the last three matches, with Benjamin Angoua unlikely to be risked upon his return from international duty as Daniel Sanchez's side aim for a third straight league victory.

  • Marseille have not lost to a side in the bottom half of Ligue 1.
  • OM, who were bottom of Ligue 1 after six games, remain just a point off a Champions League place following their 2-2 draw against Lyon in their last league outing.
  • Didier Deschamps' men were held 2-2 against Saturday's visitors the last time they met, in May.
  • Marseille are winless in their last three against Valenciennes.
  • Valenciennes recorded a 1-0 victory over Nancy, thanks to ex-OM player Mamadou Samassa's late goal.
  • Should VAFC record victory, it would be the first time they have strung together three consecutive victories since February 2010.
  • Daniel Sanchez's men have not kept a clean sheet in their last 12 games on the road.
  • Valenciennes have lost 16 of their last 23 games at Stade Velodrome, winning just two.
Despite the injury to star player Loic Remy, one would believe that Marseille would still have enough with them to contend with the threat of Valenciennes, especially given their formidable home form.
Editor's Prediction
Marseille 2-0 Valenciennes FC