Bordeaux, Marseille on collision course
© AFP

Two of Lyon's main challengers for the French title go head to head this weekend, with Marseille and Bordeaux both seeking to establish themselves as the front-runners in the quest to wrestle the title away from Stade Gerland.

Bordeaux remain France's form team, with five wins in their last six league outings, but a 2-2 draw against Lille last weekend meant they were unable to capitalise when Lyon were held 1-1 by local rivals Saint Etienne. Lyon's lead over Bordeaux remains a slender point, with Marseille five points off the pace in fourth.

Third-placed Paris Saint Germain were Bordeaux's latest victims, slumping to an embarrassingly one-sided 3-0 defeat in front of their home fans in the semi-finals of the League Cup on Wednesday. The defeat was compounded by the actions of striker Mateja Kezman, who threw his shirt to the ground and stormed down the tunnel after being substituted with half an hour remaining.

The Serbian has been summoned to explain his behaviour to the club board, with coach Paul Le Guen hinting that his future at the club is in question. "I made a mistake," Kezman said shortly after the game. "But I am a person with a strong character experiencing one of the most difficult moments of my football life since arriving here."

I made a mistake. But I am a person with a strong character experiencing one of the most difficult moments of my football life.
Mateja Kezman explains his show of petulance.

Kezman's strop has distracted attention from PSG's improving league form. Back-to-back league wins over Sochaux and Caen have catapulted them back into the title picture, and victory at Nantes on Saturday would draw them level on points with Bordeaux.

Lyon, by contrast, have not enjoyed successive victories in the league since the middle of November and have drawn their last four home games. The seven-time champions remain the team to beat, but on Sunday they travel to a Nice side smarting from an embarrassing exit on penalties to second-tier outfit Vannes in the League Cup.

The game will be particularly significant for Lyon goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who left Nice to join the champions in the summer. "I'm preparing for this match like any other match, even if it's obvious that it will be a special moment for me," he said. "All my family will be there, as well as all my friends, my old team-mates and all the Nice fans."

Bottom club Le Havre will look to bounce back from the agony of conceding a last-minute goal in their 3-2 loss to Nancy last weekend when they host fifth-placed Rennes on Saturday. Meanwhile, all eyes will be on Toulouse goalkeeper Cedric Carrasso when he lines up against Le Mans, having this week earned his first international call-up for France's forthcoming friendly with Argentina.

Saturday (21.00 CET unless stated)
Nancy-Auxerre
Le Havre-Rennes
Lorient-Monaco
Nantes-PSG
St Etienne-Caen
Toulouse-Le Mans
Lille-Sochaux (22.00 CET)

Sunday (17.00 CET unless stated)
Grenoble-Valenciennes
Nice-Lyon
Marseille-Bordeaux (22.00 CET)