Ligue 1 Preview: Olympique de Marseille v Paris Saint-Germain
The biggest game in the French football calendar takes centre stage on Sunday evening at the Stade Velodrome with both sides desperate for a win after recent setbacks
By Mohammed Ali
Azpilicueta, Diawara, N'Koulou, Morel
Lucho Gonzalez, Diarra, Cheyrou
Ayew, Remy, Valbuena
Ceara, Lugano, Sakho, Tiene
Menez, Pastore, Nene
Olympique de Marseille boss Didier Deschamps is likely to recall left-back Jeremy Morel after the defender missed out in the midweek Champions League defeat to Olympiakos. The same goes for Cesar Azpilicueta, who had been dropped in favour of Charles Kabore on the right flank.
Lucho Gonzalez could also be in the frame for a start after being reduced to a cameo on Wednesday, and he could replace Jordan Ayew for the hotly-contested Clasico. Stephane Mbia returned to competitive action on Wednesday, but a high-profile game could come too early for the Cameroonian, who is still short of being match-fit.
Andre-Pierre Gignac will not feature against the Ligue 1 leaders after an alleged bust-up with the manager left him relegated to the reserve squad.
Under-fire Antoine Koumbouare has been told by sporting director Leonardo that his job is safe whatever the result at the Stade Velodrome on Sunday.
The PSG coach enjoys no injury concerns and will surely continue with the 4-2-3-1 formation which has seen them top Ligue 1 after 14 games.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Olympique de Marseille sit 10th in Ligue 1 after collecting 18 points from 14 games.
- L'OM were defeated by Montpellier 1-0 last weekend, before going down to Olympiakos in the Champions League, delaying their progress to the last 16.
- The next goal OM score in this fixture will be their 100th in the Derby de France.
- Marseille have recorded 30 wins in this fixture in the league over the years, dwarfing PSG's 18.
- Paris Saint-Germain were defeated 1-0 at home by Nancy on Sunday.
- Antoine Koumbouare's men sit joint-top of Ligue 1 with 30 points so far.
- Les Parisiens will be keen to take revenge for their previous defeat away to Marseille, losing 2-1 in March.
- PSG have failed to keep a clean sheet in their previous 10 games against their arch-rivals.
- Les Parisiens will be without their fans at the Stade Velodrome, after the LFP banned away support in this fixture due to a history of trouble. OM fans will be banned at the Parc des Princes when they next meet.
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Top 3 Predictions
Olympique de Marseille 1-2 Paris Saint-Germain
- 24.23 %
Olympique de Marseille 2-1 Paris Saint-Germain
- 13.92 %
Olympique de Marseille 1-3 Paris Saint-Germain
- 9.79 %
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Oct 6, 2013||Olympique de Marseille 1 - Paris Saint-Germain 2|
|France - Coupe de France (FRAC)||Feb 27, 2013||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Olympique de Marseille 0|
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Feb 24, 2013||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Olympique de Marseille 0|
|France - Coupe de la Ligue (FRLC)||Oct 31, 2012||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Olympique de Marseille 0|
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Oct 7, 2012||Olympique de Marseille 2 - Paris Saint-Germain 2|
|Olympique de Marseille|
|Dec 11, 2013||Olympique de Marseille 1 - Borussia Dortmund 2||UCL|
|Dec 6, 2013||Olympique de Marseille 0 - FC Nantes Atlantique 1||FRA1|
|Dec 3, 2013||LOSC Lille Métropole 1 - Olympique de Marseille 0||FRA1|
|Nov 29, 2013||Olympique de Marseille 2 - Montpellier HSC 0||FRA1|
|Nov 26, 2013||Arsenal 2 - Olympique de Marseille 0||UCL|
|-||Mohamed Lamine Sissoko||Midfielder|
Pushing a claim to be France's No.1 at Euro 2012, Mandanda would do his bid no harm if he continues to produce the right form and stifles the attackers of PSG.
In his first clasico, Pastore could well prove to be the component that tips the encounter in the favour of the visitors, with his sheer technical ability set to cause headaches for Souleymane Diawara and Co.
With PSG unable to count on travelling support, it could well be OM who celebrate a narrow win at the final whistle.