Will Olympique de Marseille be the only French club to fall by the wayside during the group stages of European competitions? Place this Thursday at the last day of the Europa League and the Europa League Conference. In C3, Rennes are aiming for first place in their group and the 8th, Monaco must ensure their qualification, while Nantes can believe in a miracle against Olympiakos. In C4, Nice must avoid disaster during its trip to Cologne. Explanations.
Nantes for a comeback?
Antoine Kombouaré’s men can continue to believe in their lucky European star. Winners for their return to European games at La Beaujoire against Olympiakos, the Nantes then chained three consecutive defeats to find themselves on the verge of elimination. On Matchday 5, it was Igniatius Ganago who revived the flame by scoring the winning goal in the 95th minute against Qarabag.
With 6 points before the final day, Nantes no longer has its destiny in its hands. Ludovic Blas’ teammates must first win on the field of Olympiakos (6:45 p.m.), last in his group. Another condition, the Nantes must count at the same time on a defeat or a draw of Qarabag against the leader Fribourg. The only good news, the Canaries are already guaranteed to finish at least 3rd in their group, and therefore to be transferred to the Europa League Conference.
Monaco to ensure, Rennes for the first place?
Another committed French club which may also fear for its place in Europe, AS Monaco. With 7 points in 5 rounds, Philippe Clément’s men must win at home against Red Star Belgrade (6:45 p.m.) if they do not want to have to scrutinize the result of the other match in the group between Trabzonspor and Ferencvaros . In the event of a draw, the Monegasques could also qualify if the Turkish club does not win either. If Wissam Ben Yedder’s teammates lose, and Trabzonspor wins at the same time, Monaco will finish 4th and simply say goodbye to Europe.
For Stade Rennais, it is a much quieter Thursday that promises to be at Roazhon Park against the Cypriots of AEK Larnaca (9:00 p.m.). The qualification already assured for the 16th finals, the Rennais have the sole objective of first place in the group, to go directly to the 8th. Tied with Fenerbahçe on 11 points, the Bretons are second only on goal difference. The deal is simple: Bruno Genesio’s players will finish first in their pool if they do better than the Turks against Dynamo kyiv. In the event of a tie, the goal difference will have to be taken care of.
Nice to escape disaster?
In a group yet within its reach with Cologne, Partizan Belgrade and the Czechs of Slovacko, OGC Nice is not yet guaranteed to extricate itself from the group stage of the Europa League Conference. With 8 points, Lucien Favre’s men are well ahead of group D, but only one point ahead of their opponent of the day (9:00 p.m.), FC Cologne, third in the group.
In case of victory, the Niçois will keep their first place and will be directly qualified for the 1/8 finals. In the event of a draw, the 10th in the French Championship will get their ticket to the final phase but could lose their first place if Partizan Belgrade wins in the other match of the group. On the other hand, the European adventure of OGC Nice could end in the event of defeat, coupled with a victory or a draw for Belgrade against Slovacko.