Stade Rennais – Olympique Marseille: Control, Controversy, And Creativity In The Fight For Europe (0-1)

Stade Rennais hosted Olympique Marseille in a game made crucial by the unfortunate weeks that these two teams have had. With European qualification on the line, Rennais dominated the first half but were left rueing their missed chances as Marseille stole in with a moment of sheer brilliance and cruelty.
Tactical analysis and match report by Nick Hartland.

Despite winning their last three games, Rennes are now out of all tournaments following their penalty shootout loss to Shakhtar Donetsk in the Europa League. All that remains to play for is a European finish for the club with a victory against Olympique Marseille enough to keep them within touching distance of a Champions League position. 

Rennais have been an unpredictable side under Bruno Génésio in the last few weeks using five formations in their previous ten fixtures. Against Marseille, Génésio made use of a 4-3-3 shape with a back four of Djed Spence on loan from Tottenham Hotspurs, Warmed Omari, Arthur Theate, and Adrien Truffert. In midfield, Karl Toko Ekambi, Baptiste Santamaria, and Benjamin Bourigeaud. Up front, Jérémy Doku and Amine Gouiri played out wide with Arnaud Kalimuendo as the number nine. 

Similarly, Marseille has had a miserable week where they’ve seen their chance for silverware this season go up in smoke. Beaten in the league by Paris Saint-Germain F.C. and dumped out of the Coupe de France by Ligue 2 side FC Annecy in a colossal upset. They are now out of all cup competitions and eleven points adrift from league leaders PSG, meaning if there is any hope for a trophy then beating Rennais and keeping on the tails of PSG is essential for their season . . .

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Nick Hartland is a freelance writer focusing on French football. You can find him @NickHartland_ on Twitter. [ View all posts ]


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