Sochaux top­ple Mar­seille in French League Cup

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Mar­seille crashed out of the French League Cup on Tues­day af­ter los­ing 4-3 on penal­ties to sec­ond-tier Sochaux fol­low­ing a 1-1 draw in their last-16 tie.

Bouna Sarr fired the three-time cham­pi­ons ahead at the Stade Bonal but Moussa Sao swiftly re­sponded to level for hosts Sochaux. Goal­keeper Christo­pher Dilo then saved spot-kicks from Do­ria and Aaron Leya Iseka in the shootout as Sochaux, the only non top-flight team left in the com­pe­ti­tion, ad­vanced to the quar­ter-fi­nals.

“We’re frus­trated be­cause we should have qual­i­fied, but that’s the Cup for you,” said Mar­seille coach Rudi Garcia. “We knew it would be tough play­ing away.

“Hats off to Sochaux. They pushed when we scored and hit back with a mag­nif­i­cent goal. They then sat back and tried to hold on un­til the penalty shoot-out.”

Sochaux coach Albert Cartier said his team’s vic­tory had been “de­served” and came “from the heart”, adding that they reg­u­larly prac­tised penal­ties.

“Gen­er­ally we prac­tise penal­ties at the end of very long train­ing ses­sions so the play­ers re­main fo­cused while fa­tigued, even if the con­text is ob­vi­ously not the same.” Ear­lier, for­mer Por­tu­gal in­ter­na­tional Ser­gio Con­ce­icao made a win­ning start as Nantes man­ager with a 3-1 vic­tory over Mont­pel­lier.

Ar­gen­tine striker Emil­iano Sala struck ei­ther side of a Kevin Beri­gaud goal at the Stade de la Beau­joire as Nantes be­came the first team through to the last eight.

Poland in­ter­na­tional Mar­iusz Stepin­ski added a third for Nantes on the hour, al­though the hosts played out the fi­nal few min­utes with 10 men af­ter the dis­missal of Ab­doulaye Toure.

The rel­e­ga­tion-threat­ened Bre­ton club ap­pointed Con­ce­icao last Thurs­day to suc­ceed Rene Gi­rard with Nantes lan­guish­ing sec­ond from bot­tom in the French top flight. Con­ce­icao, 42, for­merly held the reins at Ol­ha­nense, Aca­dem­ica de Coim­bra, Braga and then Vi­to­ria Guimaraes in his home­land. Hold­ers Paris Saint-Ger­main host Lille in a re­peat of last year’s fi­nal, while Monaco, Nice and Lyon were also in ac­tion yes­ter­day. —AFP

BRUSSELS: The Mayor of Brussels Yvan Mayeur, right, the Vice Pres­i­dent of UEFA Michael Van Praag, left, the Pres­i­dent of EURO Brussels 2020 Alain Cour­tois, 2nd left, and the Pres­i­dent of the Bel­gian Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion Francois De Keers­maecker pose with the Brussels EURO 2020 Host City logo at the City Hall in Brussels yes­ter­day. — AP

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