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03rd Feb 2017

Dimitri Payet lost on his Marseille return and West Ham fans couldn’t help themselves

Not a happy return

Tom Victor

Dimitri Payet completed his protracted Marseille homecoming a few days ago after what must have felt like the longest January ever.

The French international was on the bench for the trip to struggling Metz after completing a £25m move, and was given a fantastic reception after replacing Bouna Sarr in the second half.

Payet might have expected a bit more stability after leaving a topsy-turvy situation at the London Stadium, but he failed to get off to a winning start away to a team that began the evening second from bottom in Ligue 1.

He entered the field of play with the game goalless, but a late strike from Yann Jouffre gave the underdogs a vital win in their fight against relegation.

Some fans might have pointed to the irony of the only goal in Payet’s second Marseille debut taking the form of a free-kick from a man wearing claret – something which West Ham fans became accustomed to seeing over the last 18 months.

Hammers supporters won’t have needed much of an excuse to laugh at the Frenchman’s expense, and so it proved when the full-time whistle blew at Stade Saint Symphorien.

And the Metz fans had quite a bit of fun with it too.

West Ham’s supporters have quickly forgotten about that midweek defeat to Manchester City, and may not be able to laugh at their former player for much longer.

Next up for Slaven Bilić’s team are Southampton, who won 3-0 on their trip to London earlier in the campaign.

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