After OM - OL : The turning points
A BOILING PRE-MATCH ATMOSPHERE
The tone before the match will have had its effect. Marseille fans promised a hellish welcome for the Lyonnais and it was in total chaos that they are welcomed near the Vélodrome. The throwing of projectiles broke one of the windows of the bus of the professional team, as a scene teeming with violence greeted the arrival of the Rhodaniens. This more than "warm" welcome continued on the pitch, where OM fans beat the record crowd (65,421 spectators) for a visit from OL, deploying a giant tifo to celebrate 120 years of their club.
A STORY OF HANDS
From the start, both teams put forth a high level of intensity. And on a Marseille attack, Thiago Mendes miscontrols with his chest and sees the ball land on his right hand. At first glance, there is no possible challenge: his arm is away from his body and Mr. Gautier whistles a penalty, in favor of the hosts. However, doubt seems to creep in after watching the slow motion replay. Not on the hand of the Brazilian in the area, but on that of Morgan Sanson, a few seconds earlier, on the same play. In a duel with Koné, the OM midfielder touches the ball with his head and then his left hand. The image is clear but the referee decides not to sanction this other hand in the area.
A LONG WAIT
The penalty obtained by the Marseillais will take almost six minutes to be taken. After having indicated the penalty spot, Mr. Gautier waited several moments before validating his decision. Finally, it will be confirmed but the occasion will wait a little longer before happening. With a laser in the face of Anthony Lopes, there was an attempt to destabilize the Olympian goalkeeper on the part of local fans, and an altercation between Benedetto and Dubois which will be worthy of the two players receiving reprimands from the referee.
THE UNPUNISHED SLAP BY BENEDETTO
Placed near the D, just in front of the penalty area, Léo Dubois collapses just before the whistle of Mr. Gautier. And here, too, the images are clear. The OL defender, positioned in front of Dario Benedetto, receives a slap from the Argentine striker before collapsing to the ground. Even if the contact is not really enough to make the French international fall, the intention of the Marseille striker is unequivocal, but his gesture will not be reprimanded other than verbally by the referee.
PAYET OPENS THE SCORE
After six minutes of waiting, which weigh as well on Anthony Lopes as on Dimitri Payet, the Marseille taker, Mr. Gautier puts his whistle in his mouth and gives the Reunion-born man the right to start. His open-footed shot to Lopes' left is unstoppable for the Portuguese goalkeeper; OM open the score and the OL must react (18 ', 1-0). But at the end of the first half, whose additional time will be only three minutes, they will not succeed.
GONZALEZ SLIPS THROUGH THE NET
Returning from the locker room, the second period has just started, Houssem Aouar also collapses. And again, the slowdown is clear: In a battle with Álvaro Gonzalez, the night's captain for Lyon receives a voluntary elbow from the central defender in the face. It's a deliberate act, but on incredibly worth only a yellow card to the Marseille No. 3.
THE INJURY TO HOUSSEM AOUAR
Moments later, at the end of a long run having taken the ball into the opponents' area, the Espoirs international is forced to leave the pitch. Injured in the thigh, Aouar, author until then of a good match, can not continue and must give way to young Rayan Cherki (46 '). Really, fortune isn't smiling on OL ...
DEMBÉLÉ GIVES HIS SIDE HOPE
At fault on the opening score by Marseille, Thiago Mendes is doing his best to level proceedings just before the hour of the game. The Brazilian midfielder finds Bertrand Traoré on the right and triggers the action that will lead to Lyon pulling a goal back. The Burkinabe winger plays a sublime touch near the sideline, turns, and sends a perfect cross into the Marseille area, where Moussa Dembélé emerges to nod home a header. The ball crosses the line and Lyon are back in the match (59 ', 2-1).
GONZALEZ IS FINALLY SENT OFF
While he should have been sent off twenty minutes earlier, Álvaro Gonzalez is finally dismissed from the game for having committed a foul on Moussa Dembélé as the last defender (64 '). Played long by Thiago Mendes, the Lyon striker picks up the ball near the OM back line and rushes towards Mandanda before being knocked over at full pelt. Another indisputable foul, and one which will result in OL having numerical superiority and believing even more strongly in a comeback.
OL MISS A GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY
At eleven against ten, Lyon still have difficulties in taking the game to a defensive opponent. But on a final attack, the opportunity to level the score is presented. Andersen plays a ball wide for Dubois on the right, who raises his head and crosses towards Martin Terrier in the box. The ball takes a deflection before the OL No. 7 hits a half-volley. Well struck, it curls off the outside of the foot. The ball flies at full speed in a cathedral-like silence but finally grazes the outside of Mandanda's post. OL have just missed a gilt-edged chance and will not come back (90 ').
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