Burst out of the blocks
After an emotional tribute to Radamel Falcao and the celebrity kick off by Sonny Anderson and Youri Djorkaeff, AS Monaco FC burst out of the blocks at kick-off. There was barely one minute on the clock when Rivière volleyed Raggi's cross goalward, only to be denied by Mandanda. The roles were reversed in the 16th minute when Raggi struck Rivière's cross, but Mandanda was there again to keep his side in the match. Moments later the OM 'keeper could only look on as Rivière's shot flashed past his right-hand upright. Game on!
Germain breaks drought!
After the lightning start, Les Rouge et Blanc brought it down a gear after an intense opening 20 minutes, but they remained in control of the game and Marseille struggled to create any danger. The second wind arrived on 30 minutes as Mandanda, again, denied Germain from a low Rivière cross. Ten minutes later, the fifth clear-cut chance for ASM was converted. Released by Moutinho, Germain curled a low shot beyond Mandanda for his first Ligue 1 goal and Eric Abidal and his side took a deserved lead into half-time break.
Rivière on fire
After the restart, James gave Mandanda a scare with a long-range free-kick that flew just wide of the mark. In the 51st minute, the referee, Mr Turpin, failed to whistle a clear penalty on Kondogbia after a foul by the substitute Imbula. Played in by a long ball over the top by Moutinho, James found himself one-on-one with Mandanda but didn't hit his shot purely and the 'keeper made another important save. But the France international could do nothing against Rivière in the 57th minute. Picked out in the area by Kondogbia, Rivière controlled before blasting the ball into the roof of the net. With half an hour left, Les Rouge et Blanc were in the driving seat and not about to let OM back into the game.
It still took an excellent Subasic save in the 59th minute to stop Gignac getting a goal back, but ASM kept OM at arm's length. Gignac, Khalifa and Diawara all drew comfortable saves from Subasic while Obbadi and Ocampos did likewise at the other end. At the end of a match controlled from start to finish, Claudio Ranieri's men savoured an excellent win with their delighted supporters. Two weeks before their summit clash with leaders Paris, they have closed the gap at the top to just three points. Even better, third placed Lille are now seven points behind and fourth-placed Saint-Etienne are 11 points adrift! It was a perfect weekend for AS Monaco FC who wanted to dedicate the win to Radamel Falcao. Mission accomplished!