Marseille continued their unbeaten start to the Ligue 1 season after a late Nicolas Pallois own goal gave them a 2-1 win over Nantes at the Velodrome on Saturday.
Alexis Sanchez made his home debut following his recent arrival in Marseille but the Chilean had been substituted by the time the game came to life in the final quarter.
An attempted shot by Jonathan Clauss broke to Chancel Mbemba in the box, and the Congolese former Newcastle United defender prodded home to put Marseille ahead 20 minutes from time.
Yet the home side, who had already seen Brazilian international midfielder Gerson hobble off with an apparent calf injury, then had Samuel Gigot sent off for a second yellow card for hauling Mostafa Mohamed to the ground and conceding a penalty.
Ludovic Blas smashed in the spot-kick to equalise for Nantes with 12 minutes left, only for Marseille’s 10 men to score the winner in the 82nd minute.
Sanchez had gone off, but Dimitri Payet had come on and his shot deflected off Pallois and looped up into the air, falling for fellow substitute Luis Suarez to head towards goal.
The ball then went in off the face of Pallois to make it 2-1, and Marseille — whose new coach Igor Tudor has been jeered by supporters before both home matches so far this season — have seven points out of a possible nine.
“For sure it was not a boring game,” former Croatia defender Tudor, speaking in English, told broadcaster Canal Plus.
“In the end it was a victory of character, of will to win and of our quality.”