Ayew double boost for OM
Marseille registered only their second win of the Ligue 1 season as André Ayew scored twice to give the 2009-10 champions a welcome 2-0 victory over Ajaccio on Saturday.
MARSEILLE 2-0 AJACCIO
Ayew would have had a hat-trick only for Ajaccio goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa to parry his 20th-minute penalty, but the Ghanaian international was not to be denied for long, opening the scoring on the half-hour mark before adding a second four minutes after the break to ease the pressure on Didier Deschamps' men.
Following their midweek disappointment at home to Arsenal in the Champions League, Marseille were keen to make amends and give their Ligue 1 campaign a boost against the struggling Corsican visitors, who helped the troubled hosts settle. Jérémy Morel's cross struck Arnaud Maire's arm, but Ayew squandered the opportunity to put his team ahead as Ochoa guessed correctly and then quickly got up to block the Marseille forward's follow-up as well.
Ayew, though, found a way beyond the Mexican international with a little help from his brother, Jordan. The younger Ayew flicked Cesar Azpilicueta's throw into the path of his sibling, who - this time - was too clever for Ochoa.
While Loïc Rémy's brute pace and strength threatened to undo the visitors, it was the guile of Mathieu Valbuena that eventually took the game away from them. The diminutive French international led Ligue 1 in assists coming into the match, and added another to his tally as he clipped an inviting cross to the back post where Ayew nodded home confidently.
Ajaccio, who were unbeaten in their four previous meetings with Marseille, could have made life tricky for the hosts when Ilan latched onto a loose pass from Nicolas Nkoulou. The ex-Sochaux man skipped away from Rod Fanni, but met his match in Marseille 'keeper Steve Mandanda, and Ayew would have completed his hat-trick in the closing seconds only for Ochoa to superbly counter his point-blank header.