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Balotelli double in vain as Marseille Champions League bid takes hit

Paris (AFP) – Mario Balotelli scored two early first-half goals but Marseille were still pegged back in a 2-2 draw against Angers as the French giants’ hopes of making the Champions League suffered a setback on Saturday.

Balotelli, overlooked for Italian international duty in midweek, took his season’s Ligue 1 goal tally to seven.

But two second-half penalties gave Angers a share of the points which left Marseille in fourth spot and eight points off the Champions League spots.

Balotelli opened the scoring after just four minutes although Angers claimed the striker had fouled a defender in the build-up.

His second goal followed just after the quarter-hour mark with a smart finish past Ludovic Butelle in the Angers goal.

Marseille, however, could not hang on as Thomas Mangani converted two penalties in the 36th and 76th minutes.

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