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Marseille look to compound Napoli travel woes

Olympique de Marseille are without a point so far in Group F and will be looking for an improvement in their fortunes when they play host to SSC Napoli on matchday three.

Marseille need André-Pierre Gignac to be firing against Napoli
Marseille need André-Pierre Gignac to be firing against Napoli ©AFP/Getty Images

Olympique de Marseille have ground to make up in Group F without a single point while the three other teams, including matchday three opponents SSC Napoli, have at least one victory to their name.

• Élie Baup's Marseille opened with a 2-1 home defeat against Arsenal FC and subsequently went down 3-0 at Borussia Dortmund. Napoli had opened with a 2-1 home win against last season's runners-up but came unstuck in their second fixture, losing 2-0 at Arsenal.

Previous meetings
• The sides have never met before. Napoli, in only their second UEFA Champions League group stage campaign, have not encountered French opponents since the 1992/93 UEFA Cup second round when a 0-0 draw away to Paris Saint-Germain FC followed a 2-0 home defeat in which George Weah got both goals.

• Napoli have scored only two goals in six contests with Ligue 1 clubs, winning 1-0 at home to Toulouse FC in the 1986/87 UEFA Cup first round first leg and by the same score at FC Girondins de Bordeaux in the third round of the same competition two years later. However, while the Italian club won by the same aggregate score in that 1988/89 tie, when they went on to lift the trophy, they lost 4-3 on penalties to Toulouse.

• Marseille took on FC Internazionale Milano in the 2011/12 UEFA Champions League round of 16, winning 1-0 at home with an André Ayew goal in added time. It was crucial in helping them go through after the second leg ended 2-1 to Inter.

• OM's results against Serie A sides at the Stade Vélodrome are W5 D1 L2;  overall it is W7 D5 L6.

• Marseille beat AC Milan 1-0 in the 1993 UEFA Champions League final but lost 3-0 against Parma FC in the 1999 UEFA Cup final.

Match background
• Last season's absence ended a run of five successive UEFA Champions League campaigns for Marseille. In 2011/12 they made it to the quarter-finals for the first time since becoming the tournament's inaugural winners in 1993, losing 2-0 home and away to FC Bayern München.

• OM's progress to the 2011/12 quarter-finals came despite their poor home UEFA Champions League record. They lost twice at the Stade Vélodrome in the group and also to Bayern. The defeat by Arsenal on 18 September means they have suffered 11 losses in their last 22 home fixtures in the competition proper, with only eight victories.

• Napoli have not enjoyed great success on their European travels in recent campaigns. The Arsenal defeat meant they had won only two and lost eight of their last 13 away games.

• In last season's UEFA Europa League they lost 3-0 at PSV Eindhoven and 3-1 at FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in the group before a 2-1 win at AIK. Their hopes ended in the round of 32 when FC Viktoria Plzeň won 3-0 in Naples en route to a 5-0 aggregate triumph.

Team ties
• Rafael Benítez led Valencia CF to the 2003/04 UEFA Cup by beating OM 2-0 in the Gothenburg final.

• Benitez's Liverpool FC overcame Baup's Toulouse in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round in 2007, winning 1-0 away and 4-0 at home.

• Mathieu Valbuena scored France's opening goal in a 2-1 friendly international win against an Italy side featuring Christian Maggio in Parma on 14 November 2012.

• Gonzalo Higuaín was born in Brest, France where his father Jorge was playing as a defender for Stade Brestois 29 in 1987/88. The Argentinian international striker has French citizenship. 

• Abedi Pelé, the father of André and Jordan Ayew, played in Serie A with Torino FC between 1994 and 1996.

• Gennaro Bracigliano's father was born in Campania, the region of Naples.

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