OL-Rennes: Salvation from the bench
To face Rennes, Rudi Garcia had made some changes to his starting eleven compared to the side which faced Marseille. Some were enforced, such as through the suspension of Paquetá, while other changes were meant to put fresh blood into a team is in the middle of playing three matches in one week. Yet, in the first half, OL had little joy against a well-organized Rennes side, one which did not want experience further disappointment after the resignation of their coach on Monday. If Anthony Lopes had little to do, the same was true for Alfred Gomis, save an effort by Memphis at the end of the first half.
After a challenging first half, OL's coach did not wait to react and made his first changes in the 58th minute: Kadewere replaced Slimani, while Aouar came on for Bruno Guimarães in midfield. Immediately, Les Gones were more dangerous, and the midfielder was involved in many of these chances. Kadewere had his part to play as well, as he was narrowly offside when he thought he had opened the scoring. The inevitable would only be postponed for a few minutes, though. Fifteen minutes from time, Thiago Mendes picked out Memphis with a long ball, and the captain ran beyond the shoulder of his defender, playing in Aouar near the penalty spot. The epitome of coolness, the French international did not waste this opportunity and scored a vital goal for OL. Beyond this goal, Aouar was also selected man of the match, and the substitutes made it possible to revitalize the team, which was much more enterprising and convincing in the second half. With this victory, OL fulfilled its aims and did not drop points in the frantic race for the podium.