French Ligue 1

Bordeaux boosted after Chamakh stays

August 20, 2009

French champions Girondins Bordeaux should be able to count on Ligue 1 top scorer Marouane Chamakh for one more season after he shelved his Premier League dreams.

The Morocco striker has already netted three goals to help Bordeaux win their first two games this term.

If they beat Nice at home on Sunday (1500 GMT), the champions will extend their record winning streak to 14 games in the league, counting their impressive run in the second part of last season.

Title favourites Olympique Marseille and resurgent Nancy also have maximum points from their first two games.

"I had said I would leave once I had won the French title with Bordeaux. Well, I will leave after winning two," local media quoted Chamakh as saying this week.

"The board and the coach have closed the door. I have accepted that fact," he added.

Bordeaux have turned down many offers from Premier League sides, including one from Arsenal, for their 25-year-old former trainee throughout the close season.

They also refused to let Chamakh go to Sunderland saying they were not a good enough team for him.

"I can understand the fact they rejected a move to Sunderland but I was surprised they could not reach an agreement with Arsenal ... I was disappointed and I am still," said Chamakh.

Big spenders Marseille, under new coach Didier Deschamps, face a tough test when they visit fourth-placed Stade Rennes on Saturday (1900).

Marseille are the only side to keep a clean sheet in their first two games.

The Provence side will still have to do without Argentina midfielder Lucho Gonzalez, their most expensive signing this season. The former Porto player fractured a collarbone late last month and he has not resumed full training yet.

Nancy, top on goal difference, visit Le Mans while former champions Olympique Lyon are at Auxerre on Saturday (both games at 1700).

Paris St Germain should welcome back striker Guillaume Hoarau when they play at Valenciennes on Saturday (1700) after a draw and a win in their first two games. The club's top scorer last season missed the first two matches with a groin injury.