Lyon and Marseille clash in Olympico

Ligue 1 Conforama > News

By I. Holyman

Olympique Lyonnais and Olympique de Marseille meet on Sunday in a game that could decide which of them is on the Ligue 1 Conforama podium come Christmas.

 Olympique Lyonnais - Olympique de Marseille 


The Olympico duo are locked together with reigning champions AS Monaco on 35 points, all three of them nine points behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain.

OL hold second place on goal difference from Monaco with Marseille, whose points tally is the highest-ever for a fourth-placed team at this stage of a season, completing the top four.

The visitors arrive at the Groupama Stadium unbeaten in 12 league games after comfortably seeing off OL's great rivals, AS Saint-Étienne, 3-0 last weekend, but they did see an eight-match unbeaten streak in all competitions come to an end with defeat in their Coupe de la Ligue tie at Stade Rennais FC on Wednesday.

WATCH: Marseille sweep aside Saint-Étienne

"We were knocked out after a game we won. We had more chances than Rennes. It should never have gone to penalties. I'm happy with my team," grumbled boss Rudi Garcia, who saw his two strikers score in both normal time and in the shoot-out only to slip out of the competition 4-3 on penalties.

"[Kostas] Mitroglou scored, [Valère] Germain scored, so it was a good match and we remain unbeaten. Congratulations to Rennes. They've gone through. Now we look ahead to Sunday [and the match with Olympique Lyonnais]."

Lyon Coupe exit

Optimism has been in short supply on recent trips to Lyon for OM, who have not won a league game in France's second city in a decade.

Lyon too have been in great form, losing just once in their last 11 league games, and miraculously avoided dropping points at Amiens SC last time out with Houssem Aouar equalising 11 minutes from time before netting a 94th-minute winner.

It was a fifth successive league win away from home for Bruno Genesio's side, but they enjoyed their trip to Montpellier Hérault SC on Wednesday much less. Myziane Maolida's stunning strike gave them a tenth-minute lead, but they were quickly overhauled and eventually slumped to a 4-1 defeat.

WATCH: Aouar's late heroics rescue Lyon

"We played for the first 20 minutes, that was all. Then we were lacking many things, commitment," Genesio noted. "Montpellier are a difficult team to play against. I didn't line up a team of 'hairdressers', as I have read. I simply wanted to give some playing time to those who have featured less. It was messy. It verged on malpractice."

Goalkeeper Anthony Lopes, midfielder Lucas Tousart and forward Mariano Diaz, the summer arrival who is OL's leading scorer with 12 league goals, should all return to the starting line-up after being rested in midweek. After scoring twice against Saint-Étienne and again after coming off the bench against Rennes, Valère Germain should keep his place at the head of the OM attack at the expense of Mitroglou.

Probable teams

Lyon: to follow

Marseille: to follow

>> PRE-MATCH STATS: Lyon vs. Marseille

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