Arsenal FC won 2-1 at Olympique de Marseille on matchday one and will be hoping to post a return victory as their fight with SSC Napoli for the leadership of Group F intensifies.
Article top media content
Arsenal FC won 2-1 at Olympique de Marseille on matchday one and will be hoping to follow up with another victory to strengthen their hopes of finishing top of Group F.
• Theo Walcott (65) and Aaron Ramsey (83) fired the north London team to a hard-fought success at the Stade Vélodrome, with Jordan Ayew reducing the deficit with an added-time penalty.
• Arsène Wenger's men followed that by beating SSC Napoli but then lost at home to Borussia Dortmund. They turned the tables in Germany, Ramsey scoring the only goal which took the Gunners to nine points, alongside SSC Napoli at the summit with Dortmund three behind.
• On matchday two Marseille went down in Dortmund and their losing run continued with a home loss against Napoli.They also lost 3-2 in Naples on matchday four to bow out of the competition.
• Arsenal had the better of it when the sides met in the 2011/12 edition, winning 1-0 away through Ramsey's late winner with the London return ending goalless. The Gunners thus beat OM to first place in the section, finishing one point ahead.
• The lineups at the Arsenal Stadium on 1 November 2011 were:
Arsenal: Szczęsny, Jenkinson, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, André Santos, Song, Arteta, Ramsey (Rosický 66), Walcott, Gervinho (Arshavin 77), Park (Van Persie 62).
Marseille: Mandanda, Fanni, Diawara, N'Koulou, Morel, Diarra, Valbuena (Lucho González 74), Cheyrou, A Ayew, Rémy (Amalfitano 69), J Ayew (Gignac 84).
• It is the third successive season that Arsenal have faced Ligue 1 opponents in the UEFA Champions League. A year ago on matchday five they beat Montpellier Hérault SC 2-0 to register their first win in the competition at home to Ligue 1 sides.
• In the four previous UEFA Champions League games Arsenal had lost two and drawn two, although their overall home record against French visitors is W4 D3 L2.
• Marseille have only recorded one victory in 11 visits to England, beating Liverpool FC 1-0 in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League group stage. They have lost six of the other ten games.
• Their game at Arsenal in 2011/12 was their third visit to England in 15 months. In the previous campaign they lost 2-0 away to Chelsea FC and 2-1 at Manchester United FC in the round of 16.
• The Gunners are in the group stage for the 16th season in a row. For the sixth time in eight campaigns they had to negotiate a qualifying round, dispatching Fenerbahçe SK 5-0 on aggregate in the play-offs with Ramsey scoring three times.
• Last year Arsenal departed in the round of 16 for the third season in a row, losing 3-1 at home to FC Bayern München and then bowing out on away goals despite a 2-0 success in Munich. It was the 13th successive time that they had made it through the group.
• Marseille are in their ninth UEFA Champions League campaign with last season's absence ending a run of five successive years in the competition. The quarter-final appearance two years ago was their first since becoming the tournament's inaugural winners in 1993.
• In last season's UEFA Europa League group stage, OM lost at VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach (0-2) and AEL Limassol FC (0-3) and drew 2-2 at Fenerbahçe SK.
• Mathieu Flamini began his career at OM, making his senior debut in December 2003. At the end of that season he joined Arsenal for the first time.
• Arsène Wenger was a defender with RC Strasbourg and began his coaching career with AS Nancy-Lorraine and AS Monaco FC.
• Bacary Sagna (AJ Auxerre 2004–2007), Laurent Koscielny (EA Guingamp 2004–2007, Tours FC 2007–2009, FC Lorient 2009/10), Mikel Arteta (Paris Saint-German 2001–2002), Olivier Giroud (Grenoble Foot 38 2005-2008, FC Istres, loan, 2007-2008, Tours FC 2008-2010, Montpellier 2010-2012) and Yaya Sanogo (Auxerre 2010-2013) have all played in France.
• Sagna, Koscielny and Giroud are France team-mates of Steve Mandanda, André-Pierre Gignac, Mathieu Valbuena, Dimitri Payet and Rod Fanni.
• Valbuena scored France's second goal in a 2-1 friendly win against England at Wembley Stadium on 17 November 2010. Theo Walcott and Kieran Gibbs both appeared for the home side.
• Sanogo, Mario Lemina and Florian Thauvin were all part of France's triumphant FIFA U-20 World Cup squad in Turkey this summer.
• Sagna and Benoît Cheyrou were team-mates at Auxerre.
• Alaixys Romao and Jérémy Morel played with Koscielny at Lorient.
• Jordan and André Ayew play for Ghana alongside Emmanuel Frimpong.
• Souleymane Diawara spent 2006/07 in England with Charlton Athletic FC.