Ligue 1: finally the year of the OM?

If OM are still a bit lethargic and disappointed with their Champions League exit, the team’s good performance in Ligue 1 has done everything in its power. And why not play for the title against PSG?

Tonight in Nantes, Olympique de Marseille will be present with five of their 8 recruits (Renan Lodi, Ismaila Sarr, Iliman Ndiaye, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Joaquin Correa), while Geoffrey Kondogbia (injured), Michael Amir Murillo (no loan) ) and Bamo Meite (finalizing the transfer) will join the group next week.

After a busy summer in which the Olympians spent more than 60 million euros, it is impossible not to classify Marseille as favorites for the podium. Marseille supporters, who expect PSG’s extremely turbulent summer to destabilize it, will even start dreaming of the title. And what if it was the year of Om?

After three days of the championship and despite a slow start against Reims and Metz, the Blues and Whites are still second in the general classification on points with Monaco (7). Determined to finally win the title of champion of France, 13 years after their last title, they have a card to play, at a time when PSG are busy with their philosophical revolution, with the notable departures of Leo Messi and Neymar. Maybe followed by Marco Verratti.

A very reliable transfer window

On the banks of the Canebière, we are very proud of the successful transfer window by the Longoria-Ribalta tandem. Players have been carefully selected to fill gaps in the squad and strengthen key areas…

At the top of the gondola, an offensive contribution from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Arriving for free, he is a world-class player who can bring a lot, especially thanks to his experience. Passed over by Dortmund, Arsenal, or even FC Barcelona, ​​the 34-year-old striker distinguished himself with a double in the return match against Panathinaikos.

But the former Saint-Etienne (whom he left for Dortmund ten years ago) is not alone. Geoffrey Kondogbia (who will need to find the right rhythm) or Atlético de Madrid’s Renan Lodi, Sheffield youngster Iliman Ndiaye or Watford midfielder Ismaila Sarr complete the list of assets for the Phocians. Without forgetting Joaquin Correa, a player with a very high potential who was poorly exploited at Inter. With the latest arrivals Murillo and Meite, OM has nearly doubled all positions and has a solid workforce.

Especially when you combine the novices with the already existing players, which was rarely seen last season. We especially think of Vitinha (who finally appears at his true level), or Amin Harit, who is back from his serious injury… On paper, the group has Lens, Rennes, Lille or Clubs like Monaco have a lot to compete with. Race for places of honor.

A Very Complementary 100% Spanish Trio

One of OM’s strengths is the complementarity of the Marcelino – Longoria – Ribalta trio. At this stage of the season, it is even more essential. Marcelino has taken charge of a foreign team for the first time in his career. But with Spaniards like Pablo Longoria and Javier Ribalta, he’s in the midst of an acquaintance. Accustomed to managing La Liga teams, his experience can only be beneficial for the Olympians. Having passed through the clubs of Villarreal or Valencia, he raised his team several times in the Europa League, even in the Champions League.

During the 2018/2019 season, Tudor’s successor won the King’s Cup with Valencia, before winning the Spanish Super Cup two years later with Bilbao, then finishing 11th in La Liga.

The Spanish technician has made no secret of his desire to combine youth and experience through his recruiting this summer. All with a balanced and competitive workforce that he has cut to his liking, most notably by not keeping Alexis Sanchez to recruit Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

PSG unstable and less sovereign?

If PSG inevitably remain the big favourites, recent seasons have shown they are not unbeatable. Unsettled by the transfer window, which could be described as “revolutionary”, the Parisians seem less sovereign.

Last year, RC Lens came very close to achieving this feat, finishing second in the standings, just one point behind the Parisians. Among OM supporters, we tell ourselves that, if a club of this size is able to shake up the hierarchy, Marseille can draw inspiration from it when they come to play a bad game this year.

Disappointing in Metz, where they accepted a draw in numerical superiority, Marseille would suffer a setback in Nantes. If successful, they will be 5 points ahead of PSG, who travel to Lyon on Sunday. But the real test will be on 24th September during 6th Septemberth League 1 Day. This Sunday, Marseille will be at the Parc des Princes. Why not put doubt in the minds of the Parisians…

Matias Bernard (with Jeremy Keynot)

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