Marseille goalkeeper Steve Mandanda has admitted the French side were simply not good enough to challenge the likes of Arsenal in the Champions League this season after seeing his team lose 2-0 against the Premier League side. The French giants were European champions in 1993 but, 20 years on, they have lost five from five games in their Group F campaign, scoring only five times and conceding 12 goals.
While their failure to progress to the knockout stages was confirmed four games before the end of the group, Marseille’s dismal European campaign was summed up after being taken apart by a dominant Arsenal side, who continued to show why the football odds are supporting the theory the club could be set to end their long wait to win a title.
A Jack Wilshere brace took the Londoners nearer the knockout stages in the win against Marseille, highlighting the Gunners current sensational form that has seen them backed by many Betfair customers to be possible Champions League winners.
Mandanda, who saved a Mesut Ozil penalty during the 2-0 defeat at the Emirates, knew L’OM faced a huge battle to come through the group when last season’s finalists Borussia Dortmund, Serie A runners-up Napoli and Arsenal was drawn against Marseille in August, but the Ligue 1 side never looked capable of challenging their group rivals throughout their brief European campaign.
“We have seen the real difference between a team like Arsenal and us. We were in a group in which the teams were much better than us,” said the Marseille stopper
“It’s been far from our level. It’s difficult to accept that, but it’s the reality. We have to work hard. Seeing that in the cold light of day, we’re not great players, we have to ask ourselves questions.”
It was certainly fairly clear to see the gulf in class between Arsenal and Marseille as the hosts take apart the French side at the Emirates. And while Marseille never looked capable of getting a result in London – a theory supported by the Betfair odds before the game – much of that was down to just how well Arsenal are playing at the moment.