Olympique Marseille intend to take action to reverse the Ligue de Football Professionnel's (LFP) decision to award Nice a 3-0 victory from Sunday's abandoned Ligue 1 game.

Play was suspended between Nice and Marseille at Venue Allianz Riviera with the hosts 1-0 up in the 76th minute when home fans flooded on to the pitch after OM's Dimitri Payet reacted to being hit by a bottle projectile thrown from the crowd by sending it back.

The situation spilled over as Nice ultras spilled on to the pitch and skirmishes broke out among fans, officials and players from both sides. The players eventually left the field of play.

Marseille head coach Jorge Sampaoli was demonstrative in the tunnel and insistent his players should not return given the situation, along with OM president Pablo Longoria.

The match was set to resume but Marseille refused to return due to safety fears, meaning the decision was made by the LFP that it was abandoned and Nice handed a 3-0 win.

According to Amazon, Marseille will take action to have that decision reversed.

"The league has decided to resume. We have decided, for the safety of our players, who have been attacked, not to resume the match," Longoria said.

"It is already the second time, we have experienced this in Montpellier. We had decided what happened today is completely unacceptable. We must set a precedent for French football by taking a stand.

"The referee agreed with us. He confirmed to us that safety was not guaranteed, he did not want to resume the game.

"But the LFP, for a matter of public order, wanted to resume. This is why we decided not to resume and to go back to Marseille this evening."

Three OM players Luan Peres, Matteo Guendouzi and Dimitri Payet were injured in the melees, while Nice claimed according to RMC that players Jean-Claire Todibo and Justin Kluivert were subjected to physical violence by Marseille's security staff during the on-field melee.

"It is disappointing that it ends like this," Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivere said. "Things are quite clear... We had water bottles being thrown unfortunately but it is the reaction of the Marseille players to throw bottles back into the stands.

"Marseille's security should not have come onto the pitch and hit our players."

Rivere added: "What catalysed things was the reaction of two Marseille players… I don’t really understand why Marseille didn’t restart."

Jorge Sampaoli dismissed comparisons to fellow Argentinian Marcelo Bielsa as he was presented as Marseille's new head coach on Tuesday.

The former Atletico Mineiro, Santos and Sevilla boss, who has also managed Argentina and Chile, has inherited a team in crisis and will be charged with bringing coherency to Marseille's play and an upturn in results.

Bielsa coached Marseille in the 2014-15 season, when OM led the way in Ligue 1 at the halfway stage of the campaign but fell away and finished fourth.

His enigmatic ways made him a hero in the city, and Bielsa is now being revered as manager of Leeds United. However, Sampaoli said he would not wish to be compared to his countryman, despite having enormous admiration for Bielsa's methods.

"For many coaches, Marcelo Bielsa is a reference, ditto for me. I have followed each of his teams and I feel close to him in my game ideas, but I'm not going to try to be like him," Sampaoli said.

"I'm going to change things quickly in my own way. I come for a project anchored in the present moment, my goal is not to be remembered for the long term. I just want to help the club out of this difficult situation and make the fans happy."

Marseille finished second last year but this season has been one of implosion, with a shocking Coupe de France defeat at the hands of fourth-tier Canet Roussillon on Sunday a new low for the team.

They are floundering in eighth place in Ligue 1 and appointed Sampaoli after suspending previous boss Andre Villas-Boas following "sporting policy" disagreements with the board.

Only three teams have won fewer Ligue 1 games in 2021 than Marseille - bottom two Dijon and Nantes, and Rennes, the team who visit the Stade Velodrome on Wednesday.

Marseille have created an average of 6.5 chances per league game since the turn of the year, having carved out 7.6 per match in the 2020-21 competition before January 1.

Overall they have created 192 chances this season, which is the fewest of all Ligue 1 teams.

OM cannot even claim to have been unlucky - they have hit the woodwork three times, fewer than any other team. Paris Saint-Germain and Lyon have each done so 19 times and Rennes and Nice on 14 occasions.

The new boss, who took his first training session on Monday, explained in a news conference: "I want to implement a short-term playing philosophy.

"We have to try to get back to basics, to show the desire, the rhythm and for each player in this group to realise he is lucky to wear this jersey.

"We have to convince the squad that the project consists of being competitive in all areas by getting involved to the maximum. Some players will adapt but others won't. Anyway, the goal is to restore the image of the club."

New Marseille president Pablo Longoria said experienced playmaker Dimitri Payet and goalkeeper Steve Mandanda, who is captain of the team, would have a major role to play in the Sampaoli era.

Longoria said: "You have to have respect for the club's legends. Mandanda is the player who has played the most for OM in the club's history. Naturally he comes into our project, the same for Payet.

"They will get to know a new playing philosophy and everyone must stay united, despite results, so that everyone goes in the same direction."

Jorge Sampaoli has been appointed as head coach of Marseille on a deal until June 2023.

The 60-year-old has enjoyed a nomadic coaching career, most notably leading Chile to Copa America glory in 2015 before departing to take charge at LaLiga side Sevilla in June 2016.

Less than a year later, Sampaoli left to take over his native Argentina but an uninspiring qualifying campaign for the 2018 World Cup preceded a last-16 defeat to eventual winners France in the tournament proper.

Spells at Santos and Atletico Mineiro followed, Sampaoli winning the Campeonato Mineiro with the latter, and he will now have another crack at European football in Ligue 1 with Marseille, who are eighth in the table.

"I have been told all my life that Marseille is a special place for passion. That the Velodrome lights up when the team plays in the stadium," said Sampaoli. 

"Marseille is a club for the people. We're not here to hide: we're going to play hard. When I received this proposal, I dreamed of being able to party in the city. 

"In the world, there are places for calm and there are intense places. It is the latter that I want and I accepted without hesitation. This club has a soul and that is why we are here. We are ready."

Andre Villas-Boas' reign at the Stade Velodrome ended in tempestuous circumstances with the former Chelsea boss suspended by the club earlier this month.

The Portuguese had offered to resign amid frustrations over the running of the club, which came to a head with Marseille's signing of Olivier Ntcham from Celtic, a player he did not ask to be brought in.

Chelsea are not giving up in their pursuit of Bayern Munich star David Alaba.

Alaba, 28, is linked with numerous European giants, with Real Madrid reportedly leading the race to sign the defender.

But it seems Chelsea are unwilling to give up.

 

TOP STORY – CHELSEA STILL EYEING MADRID TARGET ALABA

Chelsea will attempt to hijack Real Madrid's move for Bayern Munich defender Alaba, according to The Guardian.

It was reported Alaba, who is out of contract at the end of the season, had agreed to a four-year deal with Madrid.

Chelsea have been linked with numerous centre-backs.

Goal reports the Premier League club's signing plans are linked to Bayern Munich's transfer plans as the Bundesliga giants are favourites to sign RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano.

Upamecano and Niklas Sule, another Bayern defender, are also said to be targets for Chelsea.

 

ROUND-UP

- Can Manchester City land Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland? The Daily Star reports City bosses believe winning the Premier League will help them beat Chelsea to Haaland in a £100million (€114m) deal.

- Tottenham have won just two of their past 10 Premier League matches, leading to talk about Jose Mourinho's future. The Telegraph reports the Spurs head coach is under pressure but not in imminent danger of being sacked.

- Manchester United are targeting a deal for Norwich City right-back Max Aarons as they seek competition for Aaron Wan-Bissaka, according to the Daily Express.

- Following Andre Villas-Boas' exit, Marseille are looking for a new coach. Le 10 Sport reports Atletico Mineiro boss Jorge Sampaoli is the favourite to take charge of the Ligue 1 club.

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