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Marseille beat Zurich in Champions League qualifier

FC Zurich suffered a 1-0 defeat to Marseille on Wednesday as the two teams battled for a place in the Uefa Champions League knockout phase.

Defender Gabriel Heinze lifted Marseille with a rare goal, in the 69th minute. The French club is now tied for third with Zurich, each side with three points.

"It's really disappointing the way we lost the points," Zurich captain Hannu Tihinen said. "And that is really the worst result for us in Madrid."

The match in Zurich had few of the thrills of the team's 5-2 loss to Madrid in its home opener, or the drama of its surprise 1-0 win in Milan three weeks ago.

Zurich rarely threatened and came closest when Johan Vonlanthen's 47th-minute shot was tipped over by Marseille goalkeeper Steve Mandanda diving at full stretch.

Marseille needed the victory after losing their first two matches against Group C rivals Real Madrid and AC Milan. The win also ended Marseille's run of six straight defeats away from home in the Champions League.

The two teams meet again on November 3 in Marseille. and agencies