OM 1-0 Fenerbahçe: OM maintains its flawless recordsat 15 jul at 23:10
As the pre-season training progresses, so the opponents get more challenging. One of these tough opponents is Fenerbahçe, opponents of the day for Olympique Marseilles, and well known for their aggressive, relentless playing style. In other words, this was not an encounter to be taken lightly, and above all, it was a good way to progress and to look forward to upcoming matches in the schedule. Indeed, there are only two more friendlies left for Rudi Garcia's men (against Sporting Portugal and Glasgow Rangers) before the official matches start. This Friday, Olympique's players have been focusing on the opponent whom they will meet in the third round qualifying for the Europa League: the Belgian team of KV Oostende.
The tone was quickly set by two teams showing their will to win - a powerful desire, sometimes with an excess of commitment. Lead by their captain for the day, Sertic, the Olympians started the match well. With a full stadium and a crowd at fever pitch, the spectators saw a subtle strike by Cabella miss the net by a narrow margin in the fifth minute. Four minutes later, Germain took his turn to create an opportunity. The Olympique striker hit the side of the net with a powerful, right-footed strike. A moment of inattention - and everything could have gone the other way very quickly. In the action that followed, Van Persie took a strike at Olympique's defence. After ten minutes' play, the Turkish side was putting Olympique under increasingly intense pressure and, on two occasions, Pelé was forced to step out of goal. Valbuena, playing against his former club, took the opportunity, with a full-bore shot on goal that finished just above the Olympique net.
While the first half ended goalless, Sarr's many forays down the right wing and around the centre halves were worthy of note.
Following the break, there were no changes made by either side. And, while neither team was really able to break through, a winning goal seemed like a long shot. And, indeed, Cabella's shot on goal was exactly that, though it, too, failed to hit the target. Van Persie's experience could have been enough to prevail, but Pelé remained focused on his goal line. And, despite a number of attempts by Olympique, the score failed to change.
From the very first friendlies of the pre-season, OM's supporters have got used to seeing them score goals. Therefore, it was a relief when Germain cranked up the machine and opened the scoring with a right-hand cross in the 77th minute. It was his third goal in the friendly matches. Olympique managed to hold the scores until the end of the match.
Rudi Garcia's men passed their test and met the high expectations placed on them. It was their fifth successive victory of the season, with a consistent philosophy from the Olympique coach - to give playing time to his players.