Football: at OM, an effective transfer window that reconnects with an African fiber
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Ismaïla Sarr, Geoffrey Kondogbia, Amine Harit, not to mention the track Iliman Ndiaye... the OM transfer window clearly has an African fiber in this summer of 2023. Almost a tradition at the club, which has seen many players from the continent wear the Olympian colors high. A transfer window that reconnects with a part of the history of the club, which also has the merit of seeming more than relevant, even if some positions remain to be strengthened.
Ismaïla Sarr (droie) signed for OM this summer while Iliman Ndiaye (left) is tracked by the Marseille club who would like to recruit him as well. © AFP - RAUL ARBOLEDA
Text by: Yohann Le Coz Follow
What if OM made the best transfer window in Ligue 1 this summer? The question deserves to be asked as the Marseille club buys smart, even signs good shots for not a round. And to do this, Pablo Longoria and his family have reconnected with a love story. The one for players defending the colors of African selections. Many of them have already marked the rich history of the 1993 European champion club. Abedi Pelé, Didier Drogba, Mamadou Niang, André Ayew, Taye Taiwo... or even more recently, Chancel Mbemba, last winner of the Marc-Vivien Foé Award, author of an excellent 2022/2023 season.
Marseille is really a city apart 🤩, @OM_Officiel is a unique 🤍💙 club Congratulations to the groups of supporters for lighting up our city in an incredible way #Marseille the night😍#om #teamOM https://t.co/tZ6ePHWRcf
— Mamadou Niang (@mamadniang11) May 28, 2023
All have left their mark and like to look back on their memories in the south of the France. Drogba has always left the door ajar to a return throughout his rich career. Niang still calls Marseille a "city apart" and a "unique club", even years after his departure in 2010. Ayew, after his last match, said he wanted to remain a "child of Marseille" and conquer the public of the Velodrome even while playing elsewhere... The African players have built a real sympathy capital in a stadium with cosmopolitan spans.
A historical fiber reactivated, voluntarily or not, by the last Olympian signatures of the summer, which smell good the Pape Diouf years. And what is more, seem to correspond perfectly to the game project requested by the new coach, Marcelino, a sign of a synergy – not always easy to create – between the bench and the sports management.
Offensively, the Brazilian technician is looking for percussion and depth players for quick transitions forward. It was served with the arrival of Senegalese Ismaïla Sarr, snatched from Watford for 13 million euros. And it may not be over on the side of the Senegalese, since Pablo Longoria is working hard at the arrival of Iliman Ndiaye.
" READ ALSO Ismaïla Sarr at OM, the opportunity to become great in Ligue 1
Sheffield United's attacking midfielder, an excellent dribbler, is the kind of profile Marcelino is looking for to play as a second striker, in support. A sum of 20 million euros is mentioned by L'Équipe. It should be noted that Marseille also recorded the definitive arrival of Amine Harit (Morocco), after two seasons on loan at the club, and the return from loan to Sevilla of Pape Gueye (Senegal). Not to mention the semi-finalist of the World Cup with Morocco, Azzedine Ounahi, recovered from his nasty foot injury.
Profiles to fall in love
In recent years, it has been observed that the Marseille public loves to fall in love with attacking players capable of sending shivers through the corners of the Velodrome. The Gabonese Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, arrived free, could well be the next if he finds a little breath on the Côte d'Azur, as Alexis Sanchez did just before him. Especially since he will probably benefit from playing time, since Vitinha, the only player capable of truly evolving at the top, has not given any guarantees for the moment.
" READ ALSO With Aubameyang, OM bets on the last strides of the Gabonese Panther
The Blue and White crowd also loves hard-working players. If Geoffrey Kondogbia (Central African Republic), arrived from Atlético Madrid, will face much denser competition in the midfield, he has both the CV and the hard-working profile of the players that the Marseille city likes to appreciate. Like a Lassana Diara in the past, in a slightly different register. On the other hand, he will have the chance to evolve under the orders of a coach he already knows. "Kondogbia, we knew him from Valencia, we did two years with him," Marcelino said. He is an extraordinary footballer, of a very high level, both professionally and personally.»
We have recruits with whom I am in total agreement ", Marcelino gargled in an interview with La Provence a few days ago. Still, the Brazilian has asked for some defensive reinforcements, files will probably be to follow by the end of the summer.
As for Aubameyang and Sarr, they have already started this Thursday, July 27 in a friendly match won 1-0 against Waalwijk (Dutch D1). There remains an exhibition match against Bayer Leverkusen at home on August 1 for the recruits to step up before the big bath of Ligue 1.
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