Toulouse-Olympique Marseille: restarting on the right foot

sun 08 jan at 06:30
Par 
Frédéric Rostain
Photos © 
Yannick Parienti / OM.net 2017
For their first match of 2017, OM will head to Toulouse for the round of 64 in the Coupe de France, missing both Gomis and Njie.

Background

It is traditional for matches on the first weekend of the New Year to be dedicated to the Coupe de France. On Sunday, OM traveled to another denizen of Ligue 1, Toulouse Football Club. As well as being first opponents of the 2016-2017 season in the championship, TFC was also first on the list of matches in 2017. Last August, the two teams went home with zero goals to nil at the Orange Velodrome, but the sands have shifted in the meantime: Marseille's owners, chairman and manager have all changed since then. OM's results are on an upward swing. Rudi Garcia and his men finished the year firing on all cylinders. They were the best team in Ligue 1 during December, with four wins in as many outings. These wins have allowed them to go from sixth place to joint fifth alongside Guingamp.
The winter break, therefore, arrived at time when OM was on amazing form. While the pause allowed the players to take a break after five months of competitive soccer, the hope must be that the virtuous cycle would not be interrupted. This was the task that Rudi Garcia and his staff set themselves since training resumed. The Marseilles team met up on December 31st, a few hours before the the New Year celebrations for 2017, in order to get back to work. Physical, technical, and tactical sessions were the order of the day during the eight days of training at the Robert Louis-Dreyfus Center to meet prepare for the next encounters - which are important because, after traveling to Toulouse for the Coupe de France, OM will be hosting Monaco on Sunday then heading to Lyon. That's one heck of a workload!

The opponents

Saved from relegation on the last day of the previous season, TFC began the 2016-17 season on a much sounder footing. After the inaugural match against OM at the Orange Velodrome (0-0), Pascal Dupraz's men rapidly approached the top of the table, reaching third on the evening of the 7th day of play after an impressive win over the four-time champions, Paris Saint-Germain (2-0).
Bit by bit, Toulouse fell back down the field following surprising defeats against Caen, Metz and Dijon, as well as some less surprising losses against Nice, Rennes, and Lyon. Now in ninth position in Ligue 1 and out of the League Cup (after losing on penalties at Metz), the players from France's "pink city" could still bring home the bacon by wining the Coupe de France, something they haven't managed since 1957!

The key to the match

With Bafétimbi Gomis suspended for the game, and Clinton Njie not playing due to preparations for the Cameroonian national side ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations, Rudi Garcia had to make do without two of his best strikers. Between the two of them, they had scored 13 of OM's 22 goals in Ligue 1 (59%) and six of Marseilles' last nine cup goals. Therefore, the club's two hottest goal scorers were away from the pitch at the Stadium. The OM coach nonetheless had several options to make up for this absence. "We have dedicated strikers and two more experienced players, like Sarr and Alessandrini, who have had a good week. We have solutions, and we will see who's on form during the training sessions."
At Toulouse, Pavle Ninkov (suspended) and Steeve Yago (selected by Burkina-Faso for the Africa Cup of Nations) will miss the match. Ironically, the scheduling of the Africa Cup of Nations means that Clinton Njie and Steeve Yago will face each other during the first Group A match,on January 14th, when Cameroon play Burkina Faso.

Before-Match Do not miss

News First team

sat 18 feb

Olympique Marseilles-Rennes: Remaining Masters of Their Turf

They will be hosting Stade Rennais at the Orange Velodrome this Saturday afternoon at 5 PM on Day 26 of the Ligue 1 2016-2017 season. Facing trouble in their away games, Marseilles will want to keep pace at home.
sun 26 feb

OM-PSG: tension, thrills, passion, and emotion

Olympique Marseille hosts Paris-Saint-Germain at the Orange Velodrome on 9 p.m. as part of Ligue 1's 27th day of play in the 2016-17 season. The occasion will be marked with bigger crowds than ever, with Olympique being ready to defy the odds.
wed 22 feb

Vainqueur-Verratti, the masters of the midfield

Without a doubt, they are the best "6" of the championship and are competing for the first time this Sunday in the long-awaited OM-PSG (26th day of Ligue 1, 2016-17). Decryption.
thu 23 feb

Rabiot-Lopez, Titi, and Minot

Sunday, at the Marseilles-Paris SG match, two young players will be especially followed: Maxime Lopez from Marseilles and Adrien Rabiot from Paris, both symbols of their club's will to promote home-grown talent when they shoulder the task.
wed 15 feb

Dugout shooting at the RLD center

Four Olympians took part in the "Touch Challenge" and the "Wall Challenge" of Dugout this Wednesday, February 15, 2017.
sat 25 feb

Olympique Marseille-PSG live in 170 countries

Just like every year, the match with the largest crowd in the French Championship will be broadcast worldwide.
sat 18 feb

OM 2-0 Rennes: at the Orange Vélodrome, everything is green ...

With no inspiration away, the Olympians maintain most of their reckoning at home (30 points out of 39). The success on Rennes confirms the trend of the season.
mon 20 feb

OM 2-0 Rennes : Highlights

Season 2016-17 - Ligue 1 - 26th day - OM 2-0 Rennes : Highlights video.