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Classique honours even

Publish on 24/10/2021 at 23:21 - D. CROSSAN

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Olympique de Marseille and Paris Saint-Germain drew 0-0 in Le Classique at a packed Orange Vélodrome in a match the Ligue 1 Uber Eats leaders finished with ten men following Achraf Hakimi's red card.

THE MATCH

The 101st Classique was eagerly anticipated and nobody would have predicted a goalless draw given OM's penchant for attacking football and PSG naming a starting eleven containing Kylian Mbappé, Lionel Messi, Neymar and Angel Di Maria.

Both sides had the ball in the net in the first half only for the strikes to be ruled out by VAR. Luan Peres (14') turned a Neymar shot into his own net but was reprieved as the video showed that the Brazilian superstar was offside when he received the ball from Di Maria.

Arkadiusz Milik (21') thought he'd opened the scoring for OM after controlling a Pol Lirola cross and finishing low past Keylor Navas, only for VAR to intervene once more, showing that Spaniard Lirola, playing on the right side of Jorge Sampaoli's 4-2-3-1, was offside when he collected Boubacar Kamara's pass.

Pau Lopez (26') made a fine save to deny Lionel Messi a rare headed goal on the Argentinian's Classique debut and PSG suffered a further blow when Marco Verratti was forced off injured just before half-time. OM's prospects were boosted when Hakimi was red-carded for bringing down Cengiz Ünder as the home side countered dangerously.

Valentin Rongier (66') headed a Dimitri Payet cross narrowly wide and then American international Konrad De La Fuente (77') missed a glorious chance not long after coming on as a substitute. Ten-man PSG could have won it but William Saliba won  the battle of the boys from Paris suburb Bondy with Kylian Mbappé (83'). OM are still without a win against their great rivals since November 2011.

THE PLAYER: Pau Lopez

Established as OM's number one goalkeeper at the expense of club legend Steve Mandanda, Lopez put in another great performance, following on from fine displays against Lorient and Lazio. On loan from Roma, Lopez helped keep PSG's star-studded attack at bay.

THE STAT: 7

Seven red cards have been handed out in the last three Classiques with PSG being shown five of them and OM two.

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