Lyon, bottom of Ligue 1, remains “ambitious” before its trip to Marseille on Wednesday, with OL coach Pierre Sage refusing to “victimize himself” around the conditions of the reunion at the Vélodrome a little over a month later the club bus being stoned.
“We expect the transport to be secure so that the players can approach the match in the best possible way. Once we are in the match, whether the opponent or the public is against us, it is not a problem. Players are used to this. The idea is to be impervious to these things and to impose what we want to impose,” Pierre Sage declared at a press conference on Monday.
On October 29, the meeting was postponed due to the stone crushing of the bus transporting the OL players to the Vélodrome stadium and the former Lyon coach Fabio Grosso being injured in the face. “We are going there to be ambitious and with the idea of playing, of continuing our march forward, of confirming the good things seen in Lens on Saturday, and of getting a result from it. We have to focus on what is important for us: the match and therefore the game,” he insisted.
“Sportingly, it’s very good to play OM now because it’s a very big match. If we have the ambition to play well, we might as well play big matches against very good opponents,” said the technician, interim since the sidelining of Fabio Grosso on November 30.
“Today, for us, all the opponents are of very good level. Marseille has just proven with its last two matches that it is in good shape. The idea is to challenge the Marseillais at home. This will now play out in a particular context. We are quite surprised to play this match in these conditions. But whatever. We are not going to victimize ourselves. We're going to play a football match. The players will focus on the game with the idea of being efficient and following the logic stated before,” concluded Pierre Sage.
For his part, defender Clinton Mata spoke of “a delicate situation and a strange feeling”. “We didn't think we would come back or replay that match as if nothing had happened on October 29. There was damage to the former coach or the bus,” recalled the ex-Bruges player.
“In view of the events, we have a bit of fear because in terms of security, we were promised that everything would go well and that was not the case,” Mata further confided.