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Marseille seek way past miserly United

Olympique de Marseille are chasing a last-eight berth for the first time since winning the UEFA Champions League 18 years ago but face a Manchester United FC side with a formidable away record.

Background: Marseille v Manchester United ©Getty Images

Olympique de Marseille welcome Manchester United FC for the first leg of their round of 16 contest aiming to reach the last eight of the UEFA Champions League for the first time since lifting the trophy in 1992/93. While United are seeking a fifth successive quarter-final appearance, Marseille have managed just a single last-16 appearance, in 1999/2000, since that solitary triumph.

• The French champions reached the knockout phase as Group F runners-up behind Chelsea FC, recovering from two opening defeats with a run of four straight wins. Unbeaten United topped Group C on the back of the competition's best defensive record with just one goal conceded.

Previous meetings
• The clubs met in the 1999/2000 first group stage, United winning 2-1 at home on 29 September 1999 after Andrew Cole (78) and Paul Scholes (82) overturned Ibrahima Bakayoko's opener. William Gallas (69) hit the only goal of the return but United still topped the group with Rolland Courbis' OM second.

• The full lineups for their Stade Vélodrome encounter on 19 October 1999 were:
Marseille: Porato, Perez, Berizzo, Issa, Gallas, Blondeau, Brando (De La Peña 64), Luccin, Dalmat (Reina 88), Pirès, Ravanelli (Maurice 74).
Man United: Bosnich, Phil Neville, Berg (Solskjær 83), Stam, Irwin, Beckham, Keane, Scholes, Giggs, Yorke, Cole.

Match background
• United have won nine of their last ten UEFA Champions League away matches, including three victories this season.

• Marseille have already beaten one Premier League side at home this term, a 1-0 success against Chelsea on Matchday 6 courtesy of Brandão's goal. That arrested a negative trend for the Ligue 1 club who, after six straight home wins against English opposition, had suffered losses to Liverpool FC in the 2007/08 and 2008/09 group stages.

• OM's record against visitors from England now reads W7 D0 L2. United's record on French soil is W3 D6 L2.

• In the round of 16 United overcame LOSC Lille Métropole 2-0 on aggregate in 2006/07, winning 1-0 away, and Olympique Lyonnais 2-1 the following season, drawing the first leg 1-1 in France.

• Both clubs have fared well historically in two-legged ties against rivals from across the Channel: Marseille's record is W3 L1, United's W4 L1.

Team ties
• OM coach Didier Deschamps faced United five times as a player in the UEFA Champions League with Juventus. He was on the winning side in the first two matches in 1996/97, but was sent off in a 3-2 loss at Old Trafford the next season, and in 1998/99 suffered semi-final defeat by Sir Alex Ferguson's men. He enjoyed a 5-0 win against United during his solitary season with Chelsea FC in 1999/2000. His overall record against United reads W3 D1 L3.

• Gabriel Heinze spent three seasons with United from 2004, collecting a Premier League winners' medal in 2007 before joining Real Madrid CF.

• Mathieu Valbuena scored and Loïc Rémy appeared as a substitute in France's 2-1 win away to Rio Ferdinand's England last November. Valbuena got the only goal when Marseille won 1-0 at Liverpool in the 2007/08 group stage.

• Lucho González was in the FC Porto team eliminated by United in the 2008/09 quarter-finals. He and Anderson were team-mates at the Portuguese club from 2006 to 2007.

• Javier Hernández came off the bench to score Mexico's first goal in a 2-0 defeat of France at the 2010 FIFA World Cup. André-Pierre Gignac and Valbuena appeared as substitutes for a France side captained by Patrice Evra.

• Evra played under Deschamps as AS Monaco FC lost the 2003/04 UEFA Champions League final to Porto.

• Gabriel Obertan appeared twice against OM in Ligue 1 with FC Girondins de Bordeaux – a 2-1 win in Marseille in May 2008, and a 1-1 home draw in September the same year. Souleymane Diawara played alongside Obertan at Bordeaux in 2007/08, featuring in a 2-0 defeat at United in February 2007.

• Edouard Cissé appeared for West Ham United FC in a 6-0 FA Cup loss at Old Trafford in January 2003. He was in the Beşiktaş JK side beaten 8-0 at Liverpool in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League group stage.

• Paul Scholes hit England's second goal when they opened their 1998 World Cup campaign with a 2-0 win against Tunisia at the Vélodrome.

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