Olympique Marseille manager, Rudi Garcia, admits that Dimitri Payet was sorely missed in their Europa League final defeat to Atletico Madrid on Wednesday.
Payet was forced off after 31 minutes due to an hamstring injury in the final which Marseille lost 3-0.
“I chose to start Dimitri, one of our best players,” Garcia said in his post-match press conference.
“We also missed him from set-pieces as Atletico, if they do ever concede, sometimes concede from set-pieces.
“We hoped that he’d be at 100 per cent and we gave him a fitness test this morning. He was worried about playing and whether he’d be able to kick the ball hard.
“He didn’t aggravate the injury today, he just wasn’t fully fit. In matches like this, you have to take risks.
“If we had played with everyone at 100 per cent, we could have been to the maximum and played with you before this monster.”
Garcia also refused to blame Valere Germain for not taking his chance in the 11th minute when he had the opportunity but stated that the scoreline was too harsh on his side.
“The score, I think, is too severe. The best team has won, the one with the most experience, it is a great team. We will try again next year.
“We found the first serious position in the match, we went to the opponent’s level, but we couldn’t spread it in 90 minutes.
“I think we made Marseille fans proud and got a large part of the French public behind us. I’m proud of my players because of that.”