The podium and the Champions League for OM, fifth place and the Europa League Conference for Lyon: traditionally hot, the clash between the Olympic rivals, Sunday in Décines, also risks being very expensive in the race for Europe .

Last season, the Lyon side of the “Olimpico” was ruined by the throwing of a bottle at Dimitri Payet after a few seconds of play. Match stopped, one-point penalty against OL and game replayed behind closed doors. closed several weeks later. Lyon, clinched from the very first places as it is again this year, had then beaten Marseille by Jorge Sampaoli 2-1 and had considerably complicated his life on the way to qualification in C1.

This could still be the case on Sunday, Marseille being a fragile dolphin of Paris-SG. In fact, Lens even dispossessed OM of their second place on Saturday by defeating AS Monaco (3-0). “Of course, we would like them to draw and we win in Lyon. But nothing is done yet, there are still a lot of points to take. These are important matches, but not yet decisive,” Marseille coach Igor Tudor put into perspective on Friday.

In front of the press, the Croatian technician also said that he had clearly perceived that the rivalry between his team and that of Laurent Blanc was special. “I felt it this week talking with the players. I like this kind of rivalry, which increases motivation. But you have to use it well and keep the attention on the game and on what you want to do,” he said.

While OM are going through an average period, the easy victory won last weekend against Troyes (3-1) gave them a little freshness and confidence. Above all, Marseille can rely on an impressive know-how outside, where it remains on eight wins and a draw, 15 days ago in Lorient (0-0).

That evening, the Merlus had anesthetized the match and blocked OM by playing low and compact, without ever going frankly on the attack, a method that Lyon will find difficult to imitate on Sunday, because they need win and because that’s not his coach’s philosophy. “I hope I can dictate the pace, because sometimes with them it goes too fast for the opponent. They go fast, they are athletically very strong. But we can offer something else, ”assured Laurent Blanc. “I like to have possession but it’s not the team that has possession that always wins. The game will be difficult. OM’s system of play is very difficult for the opponent,” added the Lyonnais coach.

After a completely failed first part of the season under Peter Bosz, OL are still fragile anyway. Relations between the team and the supporters also remain difficult, even if the stadium will be full on Sunday, with in particular some 400 Marseilles, a first since 2017 in the league.

But casually and hodge-podge, without ever completely convincing, OL de Blanc took points, as much as PSG and more than all the others in the return phase. And seven days before the end, here are the Lyonnais again, candidates for Europe, seventh, five points behind Lille and fifth qualifying place for the C4. “Leaders of the return phase? It’s a very good thing but the analysis of the season remains the same. Indeed, in the return matches we take a lot of points. This shows progress, but there are still matches. Unfortunately we don’t have a joker. You have to take a lot of points after having lost a lot, especially at home, ”tempered Blanc.

With two teams that need points, two coaches with opposite styles but who recalled on Friday how much they respected each other, and classy players like Alexis Sanchez or Alexandre Lacazette, Sunday’s clash is in any case promising.