Approaching the home stretch of the Ligue 1 championship, the race for the Champions League saw a candidate take a knee on Friday April 5, after Lille’s victory over Olympique de Marseille (3- 1).

With this controlled success, LOSC achieves a double blow: it puts OM, seventh for the moment, ten points from fourth place, qualifying for the prestigious C1, while consolidating its presence in the leading quartet by moving up on the podium.

The logic of the current forms of the two clubs was also respected at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy: Lille had a fifth match without defeat while Marseille was beaten for the third time in a row in the league.

By eliminating yet another competitor for European places, a week after having already repelled its local rival Lens (2-1), the northern club is ideally preparing its trip to Birmingham on Thursday, where it will face Aston Villa in the quarter-final first leg of the Europa League Conference. Quite the opposite of OM, who will go with suitcases full of doubts to Lisbon to face Benfica in the quarterfinals of the Europa League.

Cabella’s Jewel

In an almost full stadium (47,000 spectators) and in mild weather for once, the players in this match on Friday initially put on a boring spectacle. The first period was disappointing between Lille who had control of the ball (58%) but lacked ideas and Marseille who mainly tried to defend.

It is precisely in this area that the Olympians then failed by conceding a goal coming from a not sufficiently supported back pass from Luis Henrique towards his captain, Samuel Gigot, who slipped. Jonathan David recovered the ball then trapped the Marseille captain to obtain a penalty which he transformed with confidence (52nd), scoring his sixteenth goal in the championship.

Back in form in recent weeks, Gigot was fooled a second time, this time by Rémy Cabella, author of a superb curling shot to double the score (71st). Paulo Fonseca then exploded with joy, an unusual occurrence, undoubtedly aware of the importance of this second goal in an uncertain match.

The “shame” of Jean-Louis Gasset

The Portuguese probably less appreciated the gift offered by his defense, which allowed OM to reduce the gap (81st). But the 51-year-old coach was inspired by bringing into play Gabriel Gudmundsson, who delivered the final blow a few minutes later (84th), taking advantage of non-existent marking.

Deprived of Chancel Mbemba and Jonathan Clauss, the Marseille defense is weakening from week to week: it has conceded ten goals in its last four matches, all lost.

“When we return this copy this evening (…), there is a feeling of shame because we lacked respect for football and for many people,” judged OM coach Jean-Louis Gasset , visibly marked by this defeat and whose state of grace seems well and truly completed.