AS Monaco bounced back from defeat against local rivals OGC Nice to beat Olympique de Marseille (3-2) in Gennaro Gattuso’s first game as manager of the club.
Gattuso seemingly had an immediate galvanising effect. Within 60 seconds Marseille took the lead thanks to Iliman Ndiaye after some good pressing allowed the side to win the ball back and transition vertically. The Former Sheffield United man’s goal on the 31st second is OM’s fastest goal since André-Pierre Gignac’s effort against Evian TG in September 2014.
However, Monaco’s response was almost immediate. Wissam Ben Yedder’s control in the box was met by Maghnes Akliouche, who worked space for himself in the box before finishing low past Pau Lopez. Ismail Jakobs then went close but dragged wide after good work from Folarin Balogun, but it was Les Phocééns who got the next goal.
Samuel Gigot remained in the box from a corner, and he wasn’t picked up by Monaco’s defence, allowing him to volley cleanly past Philipp Köhn. But once again, Gattuso’s side were immediately pegged back. This time Akliouche provided the assist as Balogun finished emphatically past Lopez, making up for last weekend’s double penalty miss and netting his first at the Stade Louis II.
Akliouche then almost doubled his account, and would have done if not for a brilliant double save from Lopez, but the France U21 international wouldn’t have to wait long to get back on the scoresheet. Roles reversed as Balogun set up Akliouche.
Ben Yedder almost gave the Principality club some breathing space, but once again, Lopez made an important save. Vitinha had a late chance to level the scores once more, but he couldn’t find the target from a close angle. Monaco have now earned eight points after conceding first, more than any other club in Ligue 1 this season, whilst OM have dropped the most points after scoring first. Marseille remain winless in Ligue 1 since 26th August, Monaco return to the top, for now.
Phillip Köhn, 5
Soungoutou Magassa, 5
Wilfried Singo, 6
Denis Zakaria, 7 – So crucial off the ball for Monaco. He made a couple of crucial interventions early on, and made it almost impossible for Marseille to progress through the middle of the pitch.
Ismail Jakobs, 6
Youssouf Fofana, 6
Maghnes Akliouche, 9 – Undoubtedly the best game of his young career. He was central to all of Monaco’s creative efforts. End product has thus far been an issue for the academy product, ho is blessed with technical ability. He has been on the fringes of the starting XI for some time, and in the absence of Aleksandr Golovin and Takumi Minamino, he certainly threw his name into the hat.87
Wissam Ben Yeddar, 6
Folarin Balogun, 7
OLYMPIQUE DE MARSEILLE
Pau Lopez, 5 – Whilst he managed a keen double-save at a vital period during the first half, the OM keeper could have done better after conceding three goals, the third especially beating him easily. He did well to save from Ben Yedder’s strike in the second half, but it topped off a mixed performance.
Samuel Gigot, 6
Jonathan Clauss, 5
Michael Amir Murillo, 5
Chancel Mbemba, 5
Azzedine Ounahi, 5
Valentin Rongier, 4
Jordan Veretout, 5
Cheick Ndiaye, 7 – A goal and an assist for the former Sheffield United man, who was vital in driving Marseille’s opening attacking efficiency in front of goal. He came off at shortly following half-time owing to an injury, but it was nonetheless a good evening’s work for the forward.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 4 – The former Chelsea man was quick to start with an early assist pulled-off well in the first minute. Yet it was an early high for the Gabon international who cut a passive figure for the rest of the match.
Joaquin Correa, 5
GFFN | Luke Entwistle & George Boxall