Marseille vs Napoli by Isaiah
Marseille lost in a pretty unfair fashion on Saturday evening away game to Nice with the score of 1:0. Guests were slightly better during the whole match and had supremacy, few great chances but still the goal from Cvitanich in 40th minute determined the winner as the home side kept the lead till very end.
Sure that the draw would have been much more fair result to players of Marseille that stood without a victory for third consecutive official game as they previous lost at home to PSG 1:2, but were also outplayed by Dortmund in the second round of Champions League group stage with 3:0 result. After two rounds played, French side has no point earned and are finding themselves today in a must win situation, not only because of a race for the second position and continuation of playing in Champions League, but in case of not getting points tonight, it will be very tough for them to get the third position as well. Central defender Lucas Mendes (8/2) picked up an injury against Nice and will be replaced by Diawara, while striker Khelifa (8/0) will not be playing either, but the home side boosted with the return of Payet who was suspended for previous match.
Napoli entered the derby game against Roma at "Olimpico" with two great chances missed, but couldn't stay in offensive mode for much longer later on. In the injury time of first halftime they were found behind in the scoreline with a direct free-kick goal by Pjanic. In 71st minute referee showed red card to Cannavaro and penalty for Roma as Pjanic wrote final 2:0 in one of rare matches team from Napoli will want to forget this season.
With this defeat, Napoli felt to five points below the leaders from Roma and will have a hard time getting back in the leading position. Satisfying fact is that one of their biggest rivals for first position Juventus, has also lost on Sunday evening. After two Champions League rounds, Italians have three points, fact that makes this match almost a must win game in case they want to remain competitive for first two positions. Rafa Benitez will be without left back Zuniga (4/0) and central defender Britos (6/1), but Armero and Cannavaro are expected to start the game in their absence, while the Italians should start with Pandev at the top of attack in a 4-2-3-1 formation. Important striker Higuain (7/3) traveled with the squad but should start the game from the bench
Game comes as a crucial one for both teams and open match is expected from both sides. Of course the visitors from Italy remain slight favorites due to their team and individual quality, but the French side is in a situation where they have nothing to lose and will surely try to attack in front of their loyal fans.