September 16, 2021

Marseille coach Sampaoli not surprised by Dieng’s heroics against Monaco

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The Senegal forward secured maximum points for the Olympians at Stade Louis II after scoring in each half of Saturday’s league outing

Marseille manager Jorge Sampaoli said he was not surprised by Bamba Dieng’s goalscoring heroics that helped them beat Monaco 2-0 in Saturday’s Ligue 1 encounter.

Dieng marked his first start of the season by opening his goal account for the visitors at the Stade Louis II in the 37th minute and he later doubled their lead after connecting with Morocco’s Amine Harit pass on the hour-mark.

The 21-year-old, who joined Marseille from Senegalese club Diambars in October 2020, had chances to increase his tally but he was twice denied by the post in the encounter.

In his assessment, Sampaoli disclosed his confidence in the Senegal forward’s abilities and he singled out his work ethic for praise.

“No, I wasn’t surprised, otherwise I wouldn’t have put him on,” the Argentine manager said, per MaxiFoot.

“I put him on because I thought he might hurt the opponent. He has a lot of explosiveness and a good quality of shot. He is a player with great potential that the club has.

“It’s a strategy we wanted to put in place compared to Bamba, because he is a deep player and we knew that was Monaco’s concern.

“We wanted to put him on the left so that he returned on his right foot, and his performance proves us right. I’m happy for this player, because he works a lot and doesn’t speak.

“He scored two goals, but also had two strikes on the post, so he could have even more. We are happy for him and for the team.”

Dieng, on his part, expressed satisfaction with the performance and he lauded Sampaoli for his encouragement.

“I am very happy with the performance. I thank the team and the coach also for trusting me. I knew I could do better and I was told to calm down. I did it and it’s back,” Dieng said.

Marseille are third on the Ligue 1 table with 10 points after four matches, five points behind leaders PSG.

They face Rennes next in the league on September 19 after Thursday’s Uefa Europa League trip to Lokomotiv Moscow.

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