Tonight’s match between Marseille and Lens is eagerly anticipated, with both teams vying for second place in Ligue 1 – and potentially mounting a late title challenge.
Ahead of the showdown, Igor Tudor spoke about their first meeting this season stating: “I have no regrets, there are matches we could have won, but we can’t win them all. Sometimes we also won difficult matches at the last minute, football does not always reward you based on merit. We have to look ahead, focus on the remaining matches. The first match against Lens was one of our best performances of the season. There is no question of improving this or that. If we perform as we did last time, I will be very, very happy. Let’s be at 100%!”
However, the Croatian coach did not underplay the difficulty of their upcoming match and acknowledged the strength of Lens, especially at home. He went on to speak about the similarities between OM and Lens tactically: “This is going to be a great match for the crowd to watch. They will put pressure on entry, as they are used to doing at home. I have great respect for them, they have their qualities and we have ours. We will see who will emerge victorious from this clash, but I think it will be us. Lens and OM have the same energy, the same desire to produce attacking football, with differences with or without the ball. They press a little more in the zone, and with the ball, we are looking for different things. But like us, they make a lot of runs, they have a lot of aggression, a lot of fluidity in the game. Loïs Openda is a very good player, who attacks deep, we will try to be very attentive to his runs in counter-attacks.”
While the OM coach was not willing to call the match a final, he admitted that the squad prepared for it like one, training with a different level of intensity this week at training. “It’s a big game, the group trained this week like they never trained before. I saw twenty players who all want to play, it does not make it easy for me to make my composition! I have great feelings, I see desire, application, and concentration in the sessions. It is something very positive.”
With only a handful of matches left in the season, a win can secure European Football and everything that comes with that success.
GFFN | Tony DesRois