Wed, 14 Apr 2021

New Marseille boss Jorge Sampaoli formally took charge of the club on Monday less than 24 hours after the Ligue 1 giants were dispatched from the Coupe de France by the fourth tier outfit Canet-en-Roussillon.

Sampaoli, 60, quit his post as boss of Atletico Mineiro in Brazil to replace Andre Villas-Boas who left after disagreeing with the club's transfer policies.

His arrival at the Velodrome comes at a gloomy moment.

A strong side including seasoned peformers such Arkadiusz Milik, Dimitri Payet and Valère Germain started the last-32 tie on Sunday night at the Stade Brutus.

But it was a tough night for the vaunted visitors.

Jeremy Posteraro gave Canet a 21st-minute lead with a brilliant free-kick which beat veteran goalkeeper Yohann Pele.

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Poland striker Milik levelled seven minutes before the break with his third goal since joining Marseille from Napoli.

But home winger Yohan Bai scored 19 minutes from time, dinking the ball over Pele, and the hosts held on on for a famous victory.

"My players were heroic, courageous," said Canet coach Farid Fouzari. "In the stands ... the stewards turned into our supporters."

The Coupe de France has proved a slough of despond for Marseille. They have only been past the quarter-finals once in the last 14 years. That milestone came in 2016 when they reached the final and lost to 4-2 to bitter rivals Paris Saint-Germain.

"I wanted to put the team in the hands of the new coach with a victory," admitted interim coach Nasser Larguet.

"It's a big personal disappointment ... The players did not understand that it was necessary to make even more effort. I thought that after the equaliser we would improve our level of play. We did not."

Sampaoli, who has led the Chile and Argentina national teams during an 18-year coaching career, will be in charge for Marseille's next match - a home game in Ligue 1 against Rennes.

Originally published on RFI

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