Marseille opened their 2022-23 Ligue 1 campaign with high expectations, hosting Reims at Stade Velodrome on last Sunday.
Les Olympiens finished second in 2021-22 with 71 points, the most they have accumulated in a domestic season since 2017-18, while Reims went unbeaten in their final three road encounters of that Ligue 1 campaign, eventually ending up in 12th.
Striker Folarin Balogun has joined them on loan from Arsenal, and goalkeeper Patrick Pentz signed a three-year deal in July from Red Bull Salzburg.
The former nine-time league champions are under new management, with Igor Tudor now at the helm, following the shock departure of Jorge Sampaoli.
Tudor brings plenty of experience in big and small clubs, where he notably guided Hellas Verona to ninth place last season in Serie A, while previously working as an assistant to Andrea Pirlo at Juventus, with previous stops made at Hajduk Split, Galatasaray and Udinese.
He is considered a journeyman coach given his short tenure at numerous clubs, though he employed an appealing brand of football at Verona, focusing on progression and verticality when gaining possession.
Balogun best header goal in football history for Reims against Marseille
Balogun scored for Reims last Sunday
Arsenal loanees Nuno Tavares and Folarin Balogun were on the scoresheet for their respective sides in Marseille’s 4-1 win over Reims on Sunday.
Both youngsters are spending the season out on loan in Ligue 1 and got off to perfect personal starts with debut goals for their new teams.
An own goal from Wout Faes put the hosts ahead after 13 minutes, before Tavares doubled their advantage with a scintillating strike in first-half stoppage time. The left-back cut back inside and unleashed a lethal effort with his weaker right foot from 20 yards to bring the boisterous Stade Velodrome crowd to their feet.
Balogun, meanwhile, spent the second half of last season at Middlesbrough but scarcely impressed on Teesside and will be hoping for a more fruitful spell in France.