Stade Rennais FC claimed their first win of the Ligue 1 Conforama season in style, stunning Olympique de Marseille 3-1 at the Orange Vélodrome on Sunday.
Olympique de Marseille 1 – 3 Stade Rennais FC
Rennes travelled to the Vélodrome sitting in the relegation zone after collecting just two points from their opening four matches of the campaign, but their hosts were in a delicate state themselves having been trounced 6-1 at AS Monaco in their last outing before the international break.
Perhaps the first goal was always going to be crucial in such circumstances and it came for Rennes, Ismaïla Sarr flying down the right and delivering a cross for Wahbi Khazri, who beat Steve Mandanda with a brilliant back-heel finish (2′).
The Vélodrome was in shock, and Rennes were further in front with just 10 minutes on the clock as Benjamin Bourigeaud was allowed to drive forward through the middle of the opposition half towards the penalty box before letting fly with a powerful strike that gave Mandanda no chance as it went in off the post.
OM defence all at sea
Bourigeaud also came close from a free-kick as the Marseille defence – with Aymen Abdennour making his debut after signing from Valencia – toiled badly. And things did not get better for Rudi Garcia’s side after the break, with Rennes scoring their third goal as a Bourigeaud free-kick from the right was swept home by Joris Gnagnon (70′).
Marseille got a goal back late on as Morgan Sanson fired past Rennes’ debutant goalkeeper Tomáš Koubek after being set up by Dimitri Payet with three minutes left, but that did nothing to cheer the home support. This was Rennes’ evening, even if Firmin Mubele blazed a stoppage-time penalty over the bar (90+2′) after Jorge Rolando had been penalised for a foul on substitute James Léa-Siliki.
Rennes move up to 14th while OM are 10th after a second straight defeat and a first loss at home in 10 games in all competitions since the beginning of March.
THE PLAYER: Wahbi Khazri
The Tunisian was making his Rennes debut after signing on loan from Sunderland and needed just two minutes to open his account for the Bretons with a quite brilliant finish. It was his first goal in Ligue 1 since netting for Girondins de Bordeaux in December 2015 in a 1-1 draw with OM, and a great start as he looks to relaunch his career following a disappointing last season in England.
THE STAT: 1
Tomáš Koubek is the first Czech player to turn out for Rennes in Ligue 1 Conforama since Petr Cech, whose last appearance came in May 2004