French side Marseille could make history when they take on one of Europe’s recent super powers Atletico Madrid in tonight Europa League final at the Groupama Stadium in Lyon, France.
Lead by former West Ham midfielder Dimitri Payet, the French side haven’t played in a major European final since 2005 when they lost to another Spanish side Valencia. Their opposition for the night have had far more recent experience on this stage, twice walking away with the Europa cup in 2010 and 2012, whilst also playing their part in two Champions league finals since!
Payet who was instrumental in his sides semi -final win over Red Bull Salzburg, claiming the assists with both his sides goals says his team have a chance stating:
“We believe against Atletico because this season has shown that we are a real team, those who won the Champions League in 1993 are still heroes because nobody else has done it since.”
“We know how tough it is. Of course, that is an added source of motivation, and if we do win the final, our names will be written into the club's history books forever.”
On the other hand, the over whelming favourites Atletico will be without manager Diego Simone who is serving a one match suspension following his dismissal to the stands during their semi final win over Premier League side Arsenal. That means his second in charge German Burgos will be handling things on the side lines with the full support off Simeone.
“It was the same thing against Arsenal, when German was in charge of the side,” said Simeone.
“I feel sad at not being there, but we have known each other for a lifetime and we understand football in the same way. I have confidence in him being in charge.”
For the French side, should they win their reward would be more than their names in the history books as they would automatically qualify for next years Champions League, as they currently stand in one of the Europa league places in Ligue 1, although they do have a game remaining.
For Atletico win or lose they will be playing Champions league next season as they are currently 2nd in La Liga behind winners Barcelona and are guaranteed a top for finish and with it an automatic place in next years Champions League.