French side Marseille off to a great start as they secure victory in Ligue 1 opener

It was a much-needed victory for Marseille and Tudor after a tumultuous pre-season.

Marseille began their Ligue 1 season with a 4-1 victory over Reims in Igor Tudor’s first match as coach, while Aaron Ramsey scored on his Nice debut to salvage a point in Toulouse.

Following a turbulent pre-season in which Jorge Sampaoli walked out over his dissatisfaction with the club’s transfer approach, it was a welcome win for Tudor.

Before the game, home fans booed the former Croatia international, but an own goal by Wout Faes and debut goals for Nuno Tavares and Luis Suarez lifted spirits at the Velodrome.

Folarin Balogun, an Arsenal loanee like Tavares, responded late on for Reims before Suarez scored his second of the evening.

Tudor benched captain Dimitri Payet in favor of five debuts, including Tavares and Jonathan Clauss, who earned a France call-up with Lens last season.

On 13 minutes, Reims defender Faes turned the right-cross back’s into his own net under pressure from Arkadiusz Milik.

Marseille were unlucky not to extend their lead when Cengiz Under and Valentin Rongier hit the crossbar, but Tavares made it 2-0 just before halftime with a low strike.

Suarez, a Colombian forward signed from Granada in July, scored after just 13 minutes, steering home after the ball bounced around the Reims penalty area.

Suarez ensured Marseille’s night by tapping home Cedric Bakambu’s pass deep into stoppage time. England Under-21 international Balogun headed in to cut the deficit.

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