With Lucien Favre’s OGC Nice and Leonardo Jardim’s AS Monaco scoring huge victories this weekend in Week 27 of the 2016-17 Ligue 1 season, the onus is on Unai Emery’s Paris Saint-Germain to respond with a victory as well. However, they face a stern challenge in Rudi Garcia’s Olympique de Marseille at the Orange Velodrome in the renewal of Le Classique, the Derby de France, at 12 p.m. PT/3 p.m. ET. A number of key players are expected to be back in the fold for Sunday’s encounter.
“Thiago Motta trained with us, but he’s not 100%. He’s going to continue working with the physios,” said Emery. “Angel [Di Maria] feels good, and Marco [Verratti] trained with us, we spoke to the doctors, he’s available. We’re going to select 19 players for tomorrow’s game.
“We know what this match represents. The supporters came yesterday because they can’t come tomorrow, we know just how important it is for them. We’re happy they came to see us, and I think my players are used to playing matches like this one. It won’t be easy, but my players are ready. We’re preparing for the match to pick up the three points and play well. It’s clear the league is difficult, we need to improve, take points and climb the table. It’s an important match. We have to play well, do our best, because a big club like Paris has to put in a great performance in a Classico.”
“You should see the atmosphere in the stadiums…the stadium is full in Paris and full in Marseille, it’s great. They’re great games to play, the Classico is something fantastic. I have seen a lot of them in recent seasons, they’re always incredible matches to see, played with a lot of intensity and determination. It’s an important match for the two teams. It’s just as important as the Classico in other countries.”
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