Marseille, Atlanta play out 1-1 draw in Europa League semi

Olympique de Marseille were held to a 1-1 home draw by Atalanta in their Europa League semi-final first leg on Thursday.

Gianluca Scamacca put the visitors ahead after 11 minutes when Teun Koopmeiners found him unmarked in the box to fire low into the far post for his 16th goal in all competitions this season.

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"It's a good result, we knew the atmosphere would be tough tonight," Scamacca told Sky Italia. "I just try to do the best I can for my team. My team mates put me in the best conditions to score."

Chancel Mbemba equalised for Marseille nine minutes later with a superb long-range strike that hit the post and into the net following a corner.

"We had a tactical plan, we knew we had to go after them and press them, make it difficult for them. I think we should have done a bit more," Marseille midfielder Amine Harit told Canal Plus. "Despite everything I think tonight we had a very good match."

Both sides missed chances to score further goals in the second half.

"I expected a few more goals, to be honest," Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini said.

"We had to struggle tonight, but it's a good result, as Olympique lost once here all year against PSG and give their best in this stadium."

Marseille will travel to Bergamo for the second leg next Thursday. The winners will meet either AS Roma or Bayer Leverkusen in the final on May 22 in Dublin.

"If Marseille got to the semi-final, it means they are good away too," Gasperini added. "It's true their results were not at the same standard as at home, but they remain a good team and we need a great performance.

"We have an incredible opportunity, 1-1 is a good result and we need to win. Whether we do it in 90 minutes, after 120 or with penalties, but we want to reach the final."