Marseille have had mixed results this season compared to their last season in Ligue 1. They currently sit in third place in the table, one spot lower than their second-place finish last season. They have managed to score goals, with 40 in 20 matches compared to their 63 in 38 matches last season. However, defensively, Marseille have significantly improved, conceding only 17 goals compared to the 38 conceded last season. Ultimately, Marseille have been consistent in their performances this season, and their defensive improvement is a promising sign for the future. The team has also made roster changes, including the addition of Igor Tudor as a replacement for Jorge Sampaoli. Major structural changes in the team on the pitch have followed, and the team is looking to build a team that can contend for the title. Below, we look at some of the stats for Marseille from the last two seasons and analyse their performance.
How has Marseille performed so far?
The above viz shows the percentile rank of Marseille in attacking, defensive, and possession stats compared to other teams in Ligue 1. We can clearly observe that they are ranked at the top in attacking stats, especially for expected goals and shots per 90. They are also at the top for entries into the opposition’s penalty area per 90. Defensively, too, they are performing well in their game in terms of high-pressure success rate and recoveries per 90.
Marseille in front of the goal in 2022/23
Marseille are currently in third place in the 2022–23 French Ligue 1, with 43 points from 20 matches played. They have scored 36 goals (36.57 xG) and conceded only 17 goals (20.2 xGA). They have scored most of their goals from around the six-yard box. They have also managed to take quite a few shots on target from outside the box. They are successful in taking shots from hazardous locations inside the penalty box, which raises their xG. Marseille have an average xG of 1.98 this season and an average of 39% shot accuracy, taking 14.29 shots per 90 minutes.
Ligue 1 2021/22 season
In their previous campaign, Marseille scored a total of 62 goals and conceded 38. The team finished their season with an average xG of 1.6 and a shot accuracy of 35%, averaging 12 shots per 90 minutes for their 2020/21 campaign. The team scored most of their goals from inside the box. It can be observed that Marseille have conceded fewer goals in 20 matches played as compared to their current season. The team finished second in the Ligue with an overall total of 71 points.
Passing and positioning in 2022/23
The above visuals depict Marseille’s passing map for their most recent Ligue 1 outing against Monaco. The match ended 1-1, and Marseille played in a 3-4-3 formation. The team is seen playing high up on the field. They play with four at the back and make sure to maintain possession. The team is playing more possession football and looking to keep the ball in the opponent’s half. It can be seen that the two central midfielders are constantly building play with the forwards and rotating the ball to make passing triangles. This has provided the team with more stability in the buildup as well as more safety on the counter.
Marseille’s build-up strategies last season
The above viz is a pass map for Marseille’s match against PSG in Ligue 1 2022/23, in which the team lost two goals to one. The team played most of their matches with five at the back. It can be seen that the team was more tucked back due to the fact that there was only one pivot in the middle as compared to two pivots in the midfield in the current season. Instead, last season, the team used a defensive midfielder as the pivot and the central midfielders to form a passing triangle facing their own goal. This left the team much more vulnerable at the back.
Overall, Marseille have seen a decent squad overhaul and have changed their manager from last season. The major change that can be seen in the team is their formation, positioning, and structure. They have looked to prevent their defensive lapses from last season in terms of letting in goals by making structural changes in the middle of the park. They are already on a better track given that they have improved their defensive record, but they might not be able to beat their record of netting goals from their last season owing to a lack of attacking options and a low conversion rate. It remains to be seen if they can move up to the second place and improve their overall goal difference as compared to last season.
Visuals via Wyscout and TFA data viz engine