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Ligue 1

  • March 3, 2014
  • • 04:00
  • • Parc des Princes, Paris
  • Referee: R. Buquet
  • • Attendance: 45483
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Paris Saint-Germain - Olympique de Marseille Preview: Ligue 1 leaders hoping to do Classique double

Paris Saint-Germain - Olympique de Marseille Preview: Ligue 1 leaders hoping to do Classique double

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PSG top the French league and arguably boast the form forward in Europe in Zlatan Ibrahimovic, but they are going up against a Champions League-chasing side unbeaten in five games

Laurent Blanc can heap misery on former club Olympique de Marseille by guiding Paris Saint-Germain to a first Ligue 1 double in Le Classique since 2003.

The table-toppers head into Sunday's clash in blistering form, having lost just one of their 12 games since the end of the mid-season break.

The former France coach earned the nickname Le President during his two-year spell with Marseille between 1997 and 1999, but became a pariah in the eyes of some of the Provencal club's fans by taking over at the Parc des Princes in June last year.

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And his reputation among the Marseille faithful could only have fallen further when 10-man PSG came from behind to win 2-1 at the Stade Velodrome in October, a result that marked the capital club's first away win over their great rivals since 2008.

Marseille will be eager to avenge that loss, but face a stern challenge against a team that they have not beaten in the last six meetings between the two sides.

However, the defending champions could go into the game under pressure should Monaco reduce PSG's lead at the summit of Ligue 1 to two points with a win at Saint-Etienne on Saturday.

A victory for PSG's closest title challengers will only increase the tension surrounding what is always a heated affair, but the hosts are likely to be full of confidence given recent performances.

Indeed, PSG have failed to score in just one game all season and in Zlatan Ibrahimovic they possess arguably the form striker in world football.

The Sweden international has already bagged 37 goals this campaign, with six of those coming in his last three games.

Ibrahimovic dismantled Toulouse with a hat-trick in a 4-2 win last Sunday, but it is worth noting that Marseille also approach France's biggest fixture in strong form.

Hopes of a place in the Champions League looked slim when Elie Baup was sacked in early December, but Marseille have slowly turned things around under former sporting director Jose Anigo, who moved downstairs to take over as interim coach after Baup's dismissal.

Marseille are unbeaten in five league games, with the likes of Andre-Pierre Gignac, Florian Thauvin, Dimitri Payet and Mathieu Valbuena beginning to fire on all cylinders to bring the 10-time champions within three points of third-placed Lille.

The visitors will be boosted by the return of midfielder Jacques-Alaixys Romao, who is set to return from suspension and give Anigo a fully-fit squad to choose from.

Meanwhile, PSG striker Edinson Cavani's participation is still in doubt because of a thigh problem, and Christophe Jallet (back) remains on the sidelines.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

PSG

Olympique Marseille

Wins
5
0
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Paris Saint-Germain FC PSG
Paris Saint-Germain FC PSG
Draw
Olympique de Marseille MAR
Olympique de Marseille Olympique Marseille
85%

Top 3 Predictions

Paris Saint-Germain FC PSG
2 - 0
Olympique de Marseille MAR
Paris Saint-Germain FC PSG
3 - 1
Olympique de Marseille MAR
Paris Saint-Germain FC PSG
3 - 0
Olympique de Marseille MAR

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