Marseille ease past Ajaccio
Last Updated: 25/11/13 2:32pm
Andre-Pierre Gignac: Helped Marseille earn victory
A stunning Andre-Pierre Gignac goal helped Marseille to fourth in Ligue 1 with a confident 3-1 win over Ajaccio on the isle of Corsica.
The France international's goal-of-the-season contender, sandwiched inbetween Dimitri Payet's opener and Florian Thauvin's second-half strike, was enough to secure all three points for L'OM in what was only their second league win since September.
Grenddy Perozo's first strike for Ajaccio was scant consolation for the managerless side and defeat for the hosts leaves them winless in seven and rooted firmly in the bottom three.
In what was a tentative opening, Marseille went closest to finding the mark the early exchanges when Gignac's miscued cross almost caught Guillermo Ochoa out, but the left post came to the Mexican goalkeeper's rescue.
Tempers began to flare soon after and Johan Cavalli and Thauvin were both shown yellow cards following a clash in front of the dugouts before Gignac found the woodwork again.
The 27-year-old cut in from the left and bent a superb shot at goal with his right foot but, despite beating the fully outstretched Ochoa, the ball came back off the base of the right post.
Ajaccio's luck ran out, though, as the half-hour approached when Marseille grabbed a deserved opening goal.
Thauvin did well on the right before cutting a hopeful ball back towards Payet who finished with style from the edge of the area.
The visitors delight did not last long though as Ajaccio hit back almost straight away.
Cavalli's excellent set-piece delivery from the right found the unmarked Perozo just six yards out and the Venezuelan was left with a simple header to beat Steve Mandanda and pull his side back level.
In what was proving to be a very entertaining opening half, Payet almost grabbed his second goal in the space of seven minutes but Ochoa's diving save made the difference and Gignac fired wide from the rebound.
However, Marseille's number nine more than made up for that miss just moments later when he reclaimed L'OM's lead in brilliant fashion.
Kassim Abdallah's hopeful cross found Gignac with his back to goal and the former Ligue 1 Golden Boot winner controlled on his chest before hitting a magnificent volley from 18 yards, leaving Ochoa with no chance.
Elie Baup's men continued to dominate after the break and the impressive Gignac almost added a third direct from a free-kick but Ochoa dealt with an awkward bounce to parry.
Ajaccio ignored the warning signs, though, and it was not long before Marseille all but wrapped up the three points with more than an hour still to play.
With roles reversed from the opening goal, Payet and Thauvin combined again and the former's teasing ball was turned home from close range by the France Under-21 international to seal maximum points for the visitors.
French Ligue 1
|1||Paris St Germain||38||89|
|14||Evian Thonon Gaillar||38||44|