Marseille players told to 'poke and prod' PSG's Neymar - Zambo Anguissa
Marseille's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa has said coach Rudi Garcia told the players to target Neymar during Sunday's 2-2 draw with Paris Saint-Germain at Stade Velodrome.
Neymar scored an equaliser but was later sent off after picking up two bookings in quick succession.
Marseille's Zambo Anguissa, who enjoyed an excellent 90-minute outing in midfield, told L'Equipe: "It was my job to poke him and prod him. The coach had warned me that 'he is a supreme talent but he can be driven crazy.'
"So, without making big fouls and by simply using small nibbles here and there, occasionally sending him to ground, I managed to get to him. At one moment, he was in [Hiroki Sakai's] area on the right and I went 30 metres towards the middle before I fouled him.
"He was quite relaxed early on but by the end, he was quite wound up. Those were our instructions and we were definitely harder on him than anybody else. However, the red card actually failed to benefit us in the end. There was no intention at any point to injure him."
PSG felt aggrieved when Marseille's Jordan Amavi was not penalised for a clear second-half handball and the Aston Villa loanee conceded that it was a "debatable" decision.
"I made the effort to get back and make the tackle," the 23-year-old told Canal+'s "19h30 Sport" show. "After making the challenge, I tried to get back up and my hand fell on the ball. It was unintentional and the referee decided not to blow his whistle. However, it was debatable."
Despite that incident, Amavi felt OM had done enough to deserve to take all three points against their rivals.
"We are frustrated," Amavi said. "The equaliser was not an accurate reflection of the reality. We would have been able to win the match had it not been for that late free kick.
"PSG played to win and we were out there to win too. We succeeded in making them doubt themselves and the game swung in our favour. The free kick at the death was a bit crappy."
Neymar's domestic suspension will come into effect immediately, meaning he will miss this Friday's Ligue 1 clash with Nice at Parc des Princes.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.