The 16th edition of Trophee des Champions takes place in Morocco, at the magnificent Tangiers Stadium, where Ligue 1 champions Lille take on Coupe de la Ligue winners Marseille.
Led by talented coach Rudi Garcia, LOSC achieved a historic success last season, having won both Ligue 1 and Coupe de France titles and they are now looking to affirm their position in both France and Europe.
Following such an impressive season, the club leaders couldn’t stop key players Rami, Cabaye, Gervinho and Emerson from leaving the club, but they did manage to find proper replacement for every player that left.
Marko Basa, Benoit Pedretti, Vincent Eneyama, David Rozenhal, Dimitri Payet and Laurent Bonnart all arrived this summer, and almost all of them will be in contention for this clash.
Taking into account that les Dogues are again one of the most likely candidates for the league title, the odds of 7.00 (6/1) offered by Victor Chandler on Lille to defend the Ligue 1 title look too good to pass.
Rudi Garcia will not be able to count on Laurent Bonnart and Tulio de Melo, but that shouldn’t be too big a problem.
Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Landreau – Debuchy, Chedjou, Basa, Beria – Pedretti, Mavuba, Balmont – Payet, Sow, Hazard.
Having trailed Lille in almost every competition last season, Marseille are determined to get one over their rivals and they will be very motivated to win this match. OM are 2.63 (13/8) with Stan James to win this game.
OM haven’t had a lot of success last season as they were beaten to the league title by Lille, although the Coupe de la Ligue trophy did bring them some peace.
Coach Didier Deschamps managed to keep the squad together, although he could do nothing to prevent Gabriel Heinze and Taye Taiwo from leaving the club.
On the other hand, OM signed Nicolas N’Koulou, Jeremy Morel, Alou Diarra, Morgan Amalfitano and Gennaro Bracigliano, so they certainly look stronger than last season.
The uncertainty surrounding midfielder Lucho Gonzalez is disrupting the atmosphere in the squad as he has already expressed his desire to leave Velodrome, but he will be in contention for this match.
Nicolas N’Koulou is suspended, while Julien Rodriguez and Andre-Pierre Gignac miss out through injuries.
Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Mandanda – Azpilicueta, Fanni, Diawara, Morel – Lucho, Diarra, Cheyrou – Valbuena, A. Ayew, Remy.