New Olympique de Marseille coach Didier Deschamps has taken his tally of summer signings to nine by bringing in FC Lorient midfielder Fabrice Abriel and former Spain striker Fernando Morientes.
Abriel, 30, arrives on a three-year contract for a fee of €2.5m, while Morientes – who helped AS Monaco FC reach the 2004 UEFA Champions League final under Deschamps – returns to France as a free agent on a one-year deal after scoring 20 Liga goals in 66 games over three seasons for Valencia CF. "I know Morientes well," said Deschamps. "He has always scored goals and is fresh and motivated to play at the highest level."
Abriel will bring some class and consistency to the Marseille midfield, having missed just three top-flight games in the last three campaigns for Lorient. "The move was driven by the competitions we'll play in this season, particularly the European Cup," said former EA Guingamp player Abriel. The southern club, last season's runners-up in Ligue 1, will enter the UEFA Champions League in the group stage.
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