Classico between Paris and Marseille promises to be unsafe on the ground on Sunday. PSG, weakened by several existing absences due to the coronavirus, will have to face an OM that presents itself ambitiously at the Parc des Princes and where its latest victory dates back to February 2010.
OM goes directly to Classico, Sunday, September 13 (21:00), to break a series that has been going on for a decade. The Marseille club’s latest victory dates back to 28 February 2010 at the Parc des Princes – 27 November 2011 at the Vélodrome – but André Villas-Boas’ team believe they will arrive in time to face a Paris reduced by absenteeism.
The main club, with an ongoing series of 17 victories in 20 matches in all competitions against OM, would like to continue their dominance over their Marseille rival. But the Covid-19 epidemic went through there, and in early September, PSG saw seven of its bosses tested positive: Neymar, Angel Di Maria, Keylor Navas, Leandro Paredes, Mauro Icardi, Marquinhos and Kylian Mbappé. For Classico, Paris is recovering the first four cities, with a question mark over their form.
OM was not spared the virus in August either, after being forced to even postpone its first match of the season against AS Saint-Étienne due to several players testing positive, but the Marseille club have since regained their vitality. Marseille appear in this Classico with more sporty certainties, especially since they won their first meeting of the French championship (3 to 2 against Brest on 30 August) when their Parisian opponents lost for their return to the league. 1 (1-0 against Lens on September 10).
“Paris has slowed down a bit, it gave our fans some hope,” admitted OM coach André Villas-Boas. “We want to win. Maybe it’s a chance, the right time for us.”
“If you are going to celebrate the defeat of others …”
PSG, who lacks offensive efficiency at Lens, will surely have to rely on the return of several of their star players to gain the upper hand over Steve Mandanda. “It’s a matter of [ces joueurs]start or end the game for us. If there is no risk, we will try, says Parisian coach Thomas Tuchel.
“The only thing that is clear is that they will not be 100%,” repeated André Villas-Boas. “We know what we suffered with our players who had coronavirus, it’s hard. [physiquement, NDLR]. “
In addition to the classic sports and health situation, Sunday’s PSG-OM was also demarcated with a few passes between the two clubs, which are folklore for this Ligue 1 summit. Dimitri Payet lit the first fuse on August 23 … After PSG’s defeat to Bayern Munich in the Champions League final. The Olympic midfielder posted a GIF on Twitterremember that only his club had a European star above the emblem. “It’s a fair game between two rival clubs”, motivated the player at a press conference, Friday.
Asked about this and the fact that OM supporters celebrated PSG’s defeat, Coach Thomas Tuchel responded on Saturday : “They celebrated our loss to Manchester last year. Nothing new, I’m not interested. If you are going to celebrate the losses of others, you have nothing to celebrate.”
In another register, Collective Ultras Paris (CUP) stood out on Saturday by placing two offensive banners, one aimed at Dimitri Payet and the other at the Marseille club. An initiative that triggered the indignation of the anti-homophobic collective Rouge Direct on Sunday.