16 - 04
The exciting atmosphere brought by the Champions’ League in the beginning of the current week was transmitted to its little sister Europa League. Suspense, goals, noise, tears, laughter…At a time, you could even think of a movie script rather than a simple football game. But it was football, and in this game, the teams that grasped their tickets for the next round (semifinals) of the second major European tournament were Arsenal, Atlético Madrid, Red Bull Salzburg and Olympique de Marseille. The English will defy the Spaniards, and the French will face up to the Austrians.
Marseille’s performance in the second leg game of the quarter finals against German team Leipzig is to highlight, all the more as the Phocéens got scored in the first minute in an overcrowded and super noisy stadium filled with 62 000 fans. The 0-1 in Germany one week ago obliged Marseille to score three times. They scored five times.
An own goal brought it back to 1-1, before French Guinean Bouna Sarr and French international Florian Thauvin gave two goals more to Marseille, 3-1 in halftime.
Leipzig got qualified again when Augustin scored for the 3-2 on a tricky passing form Guinean Naby Keita, future Reds player. Marseille had then to score one more, what they did with Payet, man of the game. The Olympians even scored a fifth goal thanks to Japanese Hiroki Sakai the day of his 28 years old.
It will be the first semifinals of a European competition for Cameroonians Zambo Anguissa and Clinton Njie. No world cup but maybe a marvelous end of season in club.
By Guillaume Mahot