A first-half Florian Thauvin header was enough for Olympique de Marseille to see off Girondins de Bordeaux 1-0 at Orange Vélodrome to move six points clear of fourth-placed Olympique Lyonnais.
Olympique de Marseille 1-0 Girondins de Bordeaux
Bordeaux came into the game in prime form, having won four league games in a row. They also came to the south coast to defend, trying to deny space to an OM team that had scored 32 goals in their 10 previous games in all competitions this calendar year.
Jordan Amavi had the first shot (8′) and the in-form Valère Germain was surprised when the ball came to him for a follow-up and fluffed is lines. Germain was more alert when Costil clawed a 23rd-minute Frank Anguissa header from a corner his way. The former Monaco man’s connection was true but Bordeaux attacker Nicolas De Préville got back to clear off the line.
At the other end Gaëtan Laborde failed to make a decent connection with a header from a Malcom ball in and the centre-forward was shown how to do it by Thauvin (35′) as the attacker emphatically headed in a Dimitri Payet left-wing corner.
In the second half Morgan Sanson’s dipper (50′) had a casual Costil worried. The goalkeeper, watched by France goalkeeping coach Franck Raviot, then came up with a great save with his legs to deny Sanson in a one-on-one (59′). Two minutes later Jules Koundé had the ball in the back of the OM net but the whistle had already gone for a Pablo foul.
Despite Gus Poyet throwing on François Kamano and Martin Braithwaite, Bordeaux created very little and the closest to another goal was when Sanson unleashed an effort from range in added time and Costil tipped it over the bar.
OM now face a crucial 10 days on three fronts as they carry a three-goal lead to Braga for the second leg of the round of 32 of the Europa League, before going to Ligue 1 Conforama leaders Paris Saint-Germain next Sunday and then returning to the Parc des Princes for the quarter-finals of the Coupe de France three days later.
THE PLAYER: Florian Thauvin
15 goals for the season matches Thauvin’s career-best haul from last season and the French international winger looks in the mood to bust through the 20-goal barrier. In addition to all those goals, the former Newcastle United attacker has added 10 assists and in this sort of form Didier Deschamps will find it hard to leave him out of France’s World Cup squad.
THE STAT: 10
OM are unbeaten in their last 10 home games against Bordeaux, winning five and drawing five.