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Atletico coach Simeone expects great Europa League final against Marseille

17 May, 2018, 00:43 | Author: Greg Wolfe
  • The scoreline mirrored the Spanish side’s last Europa League final win over Athletic Bilbao in 2012 and cemented their status as one of the continent’s most consistent teams since Argentine coach Diego Simeone transformed their fortunes

They became the first, and to date only, French club to win the Champions League by beating AC Milan in the 1993 final, and now they are hoping to become the first team from the country to lift the Europa League trophy.

Marseille's run has been surprising given they started their campaign against Oostende in late July, having only qualified as a effect of Paris Saint-Germain's domestic cup success.

"Payet will set the pace according to how he sees the game". Simeone, who will watch from the stands because of suspension, said: "They have a coach who has so many options at his disposal and a lot of nous".

"They are very solid and have the best defensive record in Spain but they are risky in attack too", he said. "Their full backs are also very unsafe". Fans were upset at this as they were seeing the level of players that PSG were signing compared to them. Instead, a large chunk of the goals come from winger Florian Thauvin — 26 in all competitions — while the rest are shared around.

Marseille are hoping the fact the game is being played on French soil will work in their favour, even if Diego Simeone's Atletico are formidable opponents. Moreover, none of those finals saw as big a difference between the two sides as we have here. "What happened before gives you experience and moments", he said.

"Maybe the best thing for us is that we're taking them on in a single match". Both took part in a "Legends Game" in Bellecour on Tuesday.

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Atletico have already assured themselves of a place in next season's Champions League by finishing in the top four of La Liga, but Marseille, now in the Europa League spot in Ligue 1 with one game remaining, would guarantee they join Atletico in Europe's premier club competition by winning the final. The French side will have a home-field advantage as the final is played at Parc Olympique Lyonnais, less than a four-hour drive from Marseille.

Maxime Lopez (for Payet 32) - 5 - It was always going to be a tough task in replacing Payet but Lopez did not have the best game as Marseille's hold on the game drifted. "Because we need him, and he knows that we all want him to stay".

"We're two similar sides".

"We'll be excited, up for it, but also tense".

Simeone is known for being very close to his players, but he'll have to keep his distance on Wednesday.

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