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Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Brandao sends Marseille into final

Brandao fired Marseille into the Coupe de la Ligue final for the third season running as they beat Nice 2-1 on Wednesday night to set up a clash with Lyon.

The Brazilian struck in the second half after Anthony Mounier had cancelled out Loic Remy's opener.

Each team then had a man sent off, Marseille's Mathieu Valbuena controversially dismissed by referee Clement Turpin and Nice's Franck Dja Djedje also failing to see out the 90 minutes.

Remy opened the scoring in spectacular fashion against his former club when he controlled a long crossfield pass in the 16th minute and curled a wonderful shot back across goal and into the far corner.

Dja Djedje crossed for Mounier to slot in the equaliser in the 44th minute, but Brandao restored the lead when he beat Francois Clerc to Cesar Azpilicueta's cross and scored past keeper Raul Fernandez.

Valbuena, already booked for a foul on Kevin Gomis, was shown a desperately harsh second yellow card for taking a free-kick too quickly, to the astonishment of the Stade Velodrome faithful. The France international will miss Sunday's Ligue 1 clash with Lyon.

Dja Djedje was then shown a straight red card with seven minutes remaining, effectively ending Nice's hopes of a comeback.

OM will meet Lyon once more on April 14 at the Stade de France, after Remi Garde's side launched a stunning fightback to beat Lorient 4-2 after extra time.

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