Lens revived their survival hopes with an impressive victory over Montpellier, but les Sang et Or will have to play another great game if they are to get something out of this match. Marseille are flying high after winning the derby game against Paris Saint-Germain and they want another victory in order to close the gap behind leaders Lille.
Can Lens escape the drop?
Lens were expected to enter the relegation fight this season, but nobody could predict that les Sang et Or would slip into the bottom three shortly after the season started and that they would stay there throughout the season. The dismal start to the season could prove to be very costly in the end as Lens now sit four points adrift of safety, despite ending the poor run of results with an amazing 4:1 win in Montpellier. Laszlo Boloni’s side deservedly find themselves in the bottom three as they don’t seem to have enough quality to avoid the drop and the home game against Marseille is likely to prove too much for them, especially as OM are playing really well at the moment. Lens are still under tremendous pressure, as witnessed by defeats to Sochaux and Toulouse in their last two home games, so it is highly unlikely that they will fare much better against mighty Marseille.
First choice keeper Vedran Runje picked up an injury while on international duty and he is expected to miss out, while Pollet, Queudrue, Monrose and Situ remain sidelined.
Marseille flying high
After showing some weaknesses in the opening stages of the campaign, Marseille have really upped their game in the second part of the season and everything suggests they will end the league campaign on a high. OM proved their credentials by playing two very good games against Manchester United in the Champions League, but Didier Deschamps’ side were, nonetheless, eliminated, which allowed them to fully focus on the league campaign. As a result, Marseille climbed to the second place in the Ligue 1 standings by winning 6 of their last 7 league games, with the home victory over bitter rivals PSG acting as a major confidence boost before the decisive battles on domestic stage. The injury situation has also improved significantly during the international break as Lucho Gonzalez has regained full fitness and his return to the starting line-up should have a very positive effect on the squad.
Apart from suspended Souleymane Diawara and injured Cesar Azpilicueta, all other players are available for selection.
Lens have beaten Montpellier away last time out but one good performance cannot change the fact that les Sang et Or have been utterly disappointing this season. Marseille, on the other hand, are on top of their game at the moment and they should have no problems winning this match.
Our prediction: Away win
Odds: 2.10 (11/10)