The French Tenth Army began to assemble at Amiens from mid-September and on 25 September began to push eastwards. De Castelnau, under the command of Joffre, launched a frontal attack on the German lines near Albert after attempts to stretch the line northward failed. De Castelnau was met with immediate resistance and counterattack as the German Sixth Army had reached Bapaume on 26 September and advanced to Thiepval on 27 September, in the midst of what was to become the Somme battlefield of 1916. The German aim was to drive westward to the English Channel, seizing the industrial and agricultural regions of Northern France, cutting off the supply route of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) and isolating Belgium.
Neither side was able to make any decisive ground and the battle around Albert ended around 29 September as the fighting moved northwards towards Arras and Lille and into West Flanders. This confrontation and those to follow were deemed draws as the fighting settled into prolonged trench warfare.