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April 27, 2017

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Marseille rout Nice 4-0 in French league

MARSEILLE, France--Marseille earned a second straight victory in the French league by thrashing Nice 4-0 Friday to recover from a sluggish start to the season.

Marseille forward Dimitri Payet opened the scoring with a low strike in the 20th minute. Florian Thauvin doubled the lead from close range on the stroke of halftime before setting up Payet, who made it 3-0 with a diving header in the 48th.

Substitute Abdelaziz Barrada completed the rout in the 88th.

"We had a great game tonight, it's really good for the team's confidence," Thauvin told BeIn Sports television.

The 2010 champions now have seven points from four games.

The hosts made the difference on the wings, again using Argentine coach Marcelo Bielsa's unorthodox 3-3-3-1 system.

Marseille midfielder Andre Ayew met a cross from Benjamin Mendy but had his sliding effort blocked by Nice centerback Souleymane Diawara. Payet followed up to shoot past Nice goalkeeper Mouez Hassen for the opener.

Marseille then missed a couple of chances but it capitalized on the weakness of Nice's flanks to add a second goal. Ayew cut the ball back to Thauvin, who slammed it into an empty net.

Three minutes after the break, Payet headed home a cross from Thauvin for a 3-0 lead. In the closing minutes, Barrada tapped home a low pass from Romain Alessandrini.

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