Nicollin: Montpellier must win

Nicollin: Montpellier must win

Published Aug. 25, 2012 9:15 a.m. ET

Rene Girard's side have opened their campaign with a draw against Toulouse and a defeat at Lorient after squandering leads in both Ligue 1 matches.

And Nicollin pulled no punches when asked for his assessment.

"On Sunday we will beat Marseille and get back on the right road," he said.

"But the spirit is not good. It's scandalous. There are a few at the moment who are really annoying me.


"I've always loved my players, my team, and now I admit and recognize that I love them a bit less."

Marseille are unbeaten in five matches this season, winning their opening two league encounters for the first time since their title-winning campaign of 2009-10.

Girard believes Marseille's arrival will bring the best out of Montpellier.

"We'll see what guts the side has," he said.

"For me, it's a great fixture in terms of working on motivation levels.

"It's the ideal match for us to rediscover the determination and aggressiveness that have been lacking in our first two games.

"The players know they have everything to gain from a match with Marseille."

Marseille head into Sunday's match on the back of a 2-1 Europa League win against Moldovan side Sheriff Tiraspol, thanks to two goals from Jordan Ayew.

Lo?c Remy returned from injury with a 15-minute appearance off the bench while Benoit Cheyrou is available after sitting out the European tie through suspension.

St?phane Mbia is also eligible to make his first league appearance of the season after a domestic ban cost any involvement in Marseille's Ligue 1 victories against Reims and Sochaux.