Two of France's European contenders kicked off their Ligue 1 seasons with wins, as Olympique de Marseille and AS Saint-Étienne both picked up three points on Sunday.
Last season's runners-up, OM had the most comfortable of starts to the new season. Élie Baup's team secured a 3-1 success at promoted EA Guingamp, Dimitri Payet scoring twice on his league debut for the club.
The UEFA Champions League group stage contenders enjoyed the perfect start as André-Pierre Gignac drove in from close range with two minutes on the clock. Two minutes later, Payet, a summer signing from LOSC Lille, doubled the advantage before making it three prior to the break as he fired into the roof of the net. Steve Mandanda saved Mustapha Yatabaré's penalty after the interval, though the Guingamp forward did secure a consolation with 16 minutes remaining.
St-Etienne, themselves involved in the UEFA Europa League play-offs, also got up and running at the first time of asking, Brandão registering the only goal of the game at AC Ajaccio. The hosts, under the stewardship of former Italian international Fabrizio Ravanelli, fell behind on 34 minutes. Brandão powered in Romain Hamouma's pass with his left foot, and the score stayed that way, with Ajaccio's Benjamin Andre dismissed late on.
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|Last updated: 10/09/2013 13:12 CET|
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