Pre-season: OM, Nice on song, PSG falter

Ligue 1 Conforama
02/08/2009

By

Some of Ligue 1's biggest names signed off their pre-season campaigns on Saturday, and while there were impressive wins for Marseille and Nice, Paris Saint-Germain lost their unbeaten pre-season record against Rangers.

Lens 0-2 Marseille

Marseille consigned Lens to their first pre-season defeat with a 2-0 victory in front of nearly 36,000 fans at the Stade Félix Bollaert.

Having been second-best for much of the first half, Didier Deschamps's men struck early in the second period when new signing Fabrice Abriel set up Brandão for the opener.

Another new boy, Cameroon international midfielder Stéphane Mbia, made the game safe in the 74th minute after being introduced as a half-time substitute.

After the match, Marseille sporting director José Anigo distanced himself from reports linking Brazilian forward Brandão with a move away from the club to make way for Spanish striker Dani Guïza.

"There are agents who spread rumours," he said. "Didier and I were surprised when we read that and also by the suggestion that Brandão could leave."

Lens: Runje - Ramos, Yahda, Chelle, Demont (Laurenti, 56) - Kovačević, Hermach, Jemâa (Milovanović, 76), Boukari - Dindane (Monnet-Paquet, 70), Eduardo

Marseille: Mandana - Kaboré, Rodriguez (Mbia, 46), Diawara, Taiwo - Cissé, Cheyrou, Abriel - Brandão (Valbuena, 82), Niang, Koné (Ben Arfa, 70)

Nice 3-0 Genoa

Nice produced a superb performance to prevail against last season's surprise package in Serie A, who finished fifth in Italian football's top flight.

Les Aiglons weathered early pressure from the visitors before Tunisian midfielder Chaouki Ben Saada lobbed them into the lead shortly before the hour mark.

Within five minutes it was all over, with Loïc Rémy (pictured) demonstrating that his aborted return to former club Lyon has not affected his focus by quickly snaring a well-taken double (60 and 62) to wrap up an eye-catching victory.

Nice: Ospina (Letizi, 71) - Diakité (Coulibaly, 71), Mabiala, Cid (Cantareil, 71), Paisley - Echouafni (Bagayoko, 71), Sablé, Traoré (Ben Saada, 31), Hellebuyck - Bamogo (Poté, 71), Rémy (Mouloungui, 65)

Rangers 1-0 Paris Saint-Germain

A second-half header from Rangers defender Majid Bougherra was enough to consign PSG to their first defeat of pre-season at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium in London.

New striker Mevlut Erding, a €10 million signing from Sochaux, spurned a host of first-half chances for the Parisians, who found themselves on the back foot for much of the first period.

Kyle Lafferty sounded a warning of Rangers' set-piece threat when he thudded a header against the post early in the second half and with 14 minutes to play Bougherra lost his marker before beating Grégory Coupet with a header that bounced into the net off the crossbar.

Jérôme Rothen produced a lively showing for the Ligue 1 side, but PSG coach Antoine Kombouaré said the France international winger had yet to decide on his future.

"He has the cards in his hand," said Kombouaré. "It's only for him that the situation is complicated, because he has to decide whether he wants to stay or go."

PSG: Coupet - Jallet, Sahko, Bourillon, Sankhare - Arnaud, Makelele, Chantôme, Rothen - Erding (Boli, 73), Maurice

Valenciennes 0-0 Rennes

Rennes coach Frédéric Antonetti was frustrated after seeing his side extend their winless pre-season run to four matches with a goalless draw at Valenciennes.

Les Rouges et Noirs, who finished seventh in Ligue 1 last term, dominated for long periods without being able to transform their territorial advantage into goals.

"We should have been 2-0 up at half-time," said Antonetti, whose team begin their Ligue 1 campaign at home to new boys Boulogne-sur-Mer next weekend.

Valenciennes: Penneteau - Tiéné (Bong, 46), Abardonado (Traoré, 85), Gomis, Mater - Sánchez - Ben Khalfallha, Cohade, Saez (Bangoura, 46), Danic - Pieroni (Pujol, 60)

Rennes: Douchez - Danzé, Mangane, Hansson, Bocanegra (Fanni, 60) - Lemoine (Inamoto, 60), Cheyrou - Bangoura (Sow, 60), Leroy, Marveaux (Pagis, 75) - Gyan (Kembo-Ekoko, 60)

Davies debut

American striker Charlie Davies made his bow for Sochaux in a 1-0 victory over Saint-Etienne. The 23-year-old failed to score on his debut but showed glimpses of his pace and power, before his Czech strike partner Václav Svěrkoš netted the winner 10 minutes from time.

Mathieu Coutadeur put transfer speculation linking him with a move to either Monaco or Lens behind him to inspire Le Mans to a 3-1 win against Greek outfit Panthrakikos. The midfielder had a hand in two goals as his side recorded their fourth win in six friendly matches.

Elsewhere, Auxerre overcame Nancy by two goals to one, while Boulogne recorded a 3-1 victory over a Union of Professional Football Players (UNFP) representative side.

>> All Ligue 1's pre-season plans

>> 2009/10 complete fixture list








Your email has been successfully sent
OK