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2019-20 French Ligue 1, Regular Season
  • Darío Benedetto (33')

Marseille labour to win over Saint-Etienne

Olympique de Marseille laboured to a 1-0 victory over Saint-Etienne in a bad-tempered Ligue 1 game on Sunday thanks to Dario Benedetto's second goal since joining them from Boca Juniors last month.

The Argentine, playing in his first season in European football at the age of 29, finished off a flowing move down the right in the 33rd minute, one of only two shots on target his side mustered in the whole game.

It was a second successive win for Andre Villas-Boas' side, leaving them in eighth place with seven points from four games.

Saint-Etienne, who have not won at Marseille since 1979, managed just three shots on target and rarely looked dangerous. Winners of a record 10 Ligue 1 titles, they are 16th with four points from four games.

Tempers flared in the second half following a lunging tackle by Marseille defender Jordan Amavi on Sergi Palencia, who limped off with a huge swelling around his right ankle.

Amavi was shown a yellow card before the referee had a long look again at the incident on the VAR pitchside monitor but stuck with the original decision, prompting angry protests from the Saint-Etienne players.

Dozens of firecrackers were let off by Marseille supporters late in the game and smoke blew across the field but play continued.