Marseille loses perfect league record

Marseille loses perfect league record

PARIS - Reuters
Marseille loses perfect league record

Valenciennes fans cheer for their team during their French Ligue 1 soccer match against Olympic Marseille at the Hainaut Stadium in Valenciennes September 30, 2012. REUTERS

Olympique Marseille slumped to its first defeat of the season as its perfect Ligue 1 start was blown away in an embarrassing 4-1 beating by Valenciennes yesterday.

Marseille has 18 points and still enjoys a three-point lead over second-placed Paris St Germain while third-placed Olympique Lyon (14 points) hosted Girondins Bordeaux later yesterday. Valenciennes climbed to sixth on 11 points.

Marseille had the best defense before kickoff with only one goal conceded in their six previous league matches but was sunk at Valenciennes’s Stade du Hainaut in a torrid first half.

Gael Danic curled a free kick into the near top corner in the 16th minute, the first time Marseille had fallen behind for the first time of the season, and conceded another when Danic burst into the box and set up Anthony Le Tallec on 34 minutes.

Goalkeeper Steve Mandanda then made a complete mess of an underarm throw five minutes later and the ball landed on Foued Kadir, who fired home to make it 3-0.

Le Tallec wrapped it up after the hour mark with a downward header before being replaced to a standing ovation five minutes from time. Marseille’s Jordan Ayew scored a consolation goal in added time with a fine volley.