Olympique de Marseille’s Ligue 1 crisis continued as they were defeated 5-3 at home by relegation strugglers FC Lorient.
OM fell 2-0 behind in the opening 15 minutes following goals from Jordan Ayew and Francois Bellogou, and while they drew level inside the second half thanks to efforts from Andre Ayew and Jeremy Morel, they were undone again as Romain Philoppoteaux gave Les Merlus the lead.
Substitute Michy Batshuayi responded with a goal, and it looked as though Marseille would go on to secure the victory.
However, they weren’t banking on a late double from the visitors. Jordan scored his second—a wonderful effort—on 84 minutes, before Mathias Autret scored Lorient’s fifth shortly afterwards.
The result keeps Marseille in fourth, eight points behind leaders Olympique Lyonnais and two behind AS Monaco, who occupy the third Champions League spot.
The Club of the Principality have a game in hand—against Racing Club de Lens on Sunday—and will surely be looking to put daylight between themselves and OM.
Several weeks ago, Marcelo Bielsa’s side were right in the midst of a title challenge.
However, they failed to beat Lyon at home and then capitulated against Paris Saint-Germain—again at the Stade Velodrome—to fall behind the leading pack.
Then came two back-to-back defeats against mid-table pair Girondins de Bordeaux and FC Nantes, all but confirming that the wait for a title would continue in Provence.
The home match with strugglers Lorient ought to have been a final chance for Bielsa and his team to get back on track, but with a bizarre tactical approach—including playing Andre Ayew at left-back—they started terribly.
Jordan—returning to the Velodrome for his first match since leaving the club last summer—opened the scoring on nine minutes with a fine effort from outside the box.
They were two ahead five minutes later when centre-back Bellugou profited from some dreadful set-piece defending to give Lorient tangible hope of Ligue 1 survival.
The Bretons have been in poor form recently—failing to beat fellow strugglers Lens and Toulouse in their last two matches—and familiar failings crept in at the beginning of the second half.
Marseille looked invigorated after the break and Andre Ayew gave them a lifeline with an agile back-heeled volley when Lorient failed to clear their lines.
They then equalised through Jeremy Morel, who headed home after a superb free kick from Dimitri Payet.
With Marseille wresting back control of the match, they then collapsed once more. Nicolas Nkoulou lost concentration, giving away possession and watching on, horrified, as Philoppoteaux again gave Sylvain Ripoll’s side the lead.
It wasn’t to last, and Batshuayi ended a few barren weeks with this sharp finish after beating Les Merlus’ offside trap.
From here, OM could and probably should have gone on to beat their beleaguered opponents, but Lorient—demonstrating a resolve that has been lacking this season—responded perfectly.
Jordan made the most of some lax defending to fire home this beautiful effort.
Marseille’s capitulation continued moments later when Autret finished from close range.
The result lifts Lorient out of the relegation zone, pushing them up to 14th place. Ripoll and his team will be watching on as the weekend unravels, hoping that those sides beneath them—Evian, Bastia, Toulouse and Reims—fail to pick up points.