Payet relishing Lyon showdown

Marseille
Marseille star Dimitri Payet is set to be fit to play in Wednesday’s Europa League final against Atletico Madrid in Lyon.

Marseille star Dimitri Payet says he’s relishing Sunday’s battle with rivals Lyon and claims the fixture has taken on more of a significant meaning recently.

With Paris Saint-Germain pulling away at the top of the Ligue 1 table, it looks like everyone else will once again have to battle it out to see who is best of the rest in France.

An in-form Lyon side, with two wins from their last two outings, head to Marseille this weekend looking to narrow the three-point gap on the hosts.

With both clubs competing in the same area of the table, France international and former West Ham playmaker Payet is looking forward to going toe-to-toe with Lyon on Sunday.

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“It’s an important match,” Payet said on the Marseille website. “We play against a direct rival who has the same goals as us. It will be necessary to put in a performance like we showed against Lille (in a 2-1 win last Saturday).

“PSG is the historical rival of Marseille, but today they operate in a completely different championship. First place being assured, the others compete for the ones that come after. We have the same goals as Lyon. This gives rise to showdowns that are even more exciting and spectacular.”

The match will be the first time former Marseille boss Rudi Garcia returns to the Stade Velodrome, having left the club at the end of last season before going on to join Lyon.

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