Paris Saint-Germain – Montpellier Preview: Ligue 1’s top two square off at Parc des Princes
Carlo Ancelotti’s men slipped up against Nice last weekend and, as a result, they were caught by La Paillade, who are unexpected challengers for the French title
By Robin Bairner
Bisevac, Lugano, Sakho, Maxwell
Motta, Sissoko, Pastore
Bocaly, Yangambiwa, Hilton, Bedimo
Cabella, Belhanda, Utaka
PSG hope to be able to welcome back Javier Pastore to their starting XI after injury but, if the Argentine is not fit to play, Mathieu Bodmer is liable to be given the nod, despite a knock picked up in the 1-0 Coupe de France win over Dijon on Wednesday. Christophe Jallet is a slight doubt after suffering a slight injury in midweek.
Siaka Tiene is back from the Africa Cup of Nations but is unlikely to be involved heavily.
Key Marseille central defender Hilton missed out on last weekend’s 3-0 victory over Ajaccio due to a last-minute problem, but the Brazilian is expected back in the squad for this clash after training much of the week. Benjamin Stambouli, the club’s Player of the Month for January, is likely to make way.
Geoffrey Dernis is the only player sidelined for Rene Girard’s men.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Paris Saint-Germain are top of Ligue 1, becoming the first club to reach the 50-point mark thanks to last weekend’s scoreless draw against Nice.
- The stalemate at the Stade du Ray was the first time that Les Parisiens have failed to win under Carlo Ancelotti, but they were back on track in midweek, beating Dijon 1-0 in the Coupe de France.
- Les Parisiens have twice lost at home in the league this season, on both occasions by a 1-0 scoreline, going down against Lorient and Nancy.
- Nene has been their most prolific player at home, registering half of the club’s 22 league goals scored at Parc des Princes.
- On the seven occasions when they have scored the opening goal in front of their home fans this season, PSG have gone on to win the game.
- Although Montpellier have a poor record in Paris – winning only five of 22 away matches against PSG – they’re unbeaten in the City of Lights since winning promotion back to the top flight two seasons ago.
- Rene Girard’s side have been noted for their formidable home form, losing only once this term as they slipped to a 3-0 loss against Sunday’s opponents.
- With 45 goals to their credit, La Paillade are comfortably Ligue 1’s top scorers, bettering the tallies of Lille (40) and PSG (39).
- Olivier Giroud has contributed 16 of these goals, not to mention six assists.
- Montpellier are not all about offensive strength, though; since the turn of the year, they have played seven times and have yet to concede.
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Top 3 Predictions
Paris Saint-Germain 1-2 Montpellier Herault SC
- 15.03 %
Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 Montpellier Herault SC
- 15.03 %
Paris Saint-Germain 2-0 Montpellier Herault SC
- 11.77 %
|France - Coupe de France (FRAC)||Jan 23, 2014||Paris Saint-Germain 1 - Montpellier Herault SC 2|
|France - Ligue 1 (Lig1)||Aug 10, 2013||Montpellier Herault SC 1 - Paris Saint-Germain 1|
|France - Ligue 1 (Lig1)||Mar 30, 2013||Paris Saint-Germain 1 - Montpellier Herault SC 0|
|France - Ligue 1 (Lig1)||Nov 12, 2012||Montpellier Herault SC 1 - Paris Saint-Germain 1|
|France - Ligue 1 (Lig1)||Feb 20, 2012||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Montpellier Herault SC 2|
|Mar 8, 2014||SC Bastia 0 - Paris Saint-Germain 3||Lig1|
|Mar 3, 2014||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Olympique de Marseille 0||Lig1|
|Feb 23, 2014||Toulouse FC 2 - Paris Saint-Germain 4||Lig1|
|Feb 19, 2014||Bayer 04 Leverkusen 0 - Paris Saint-Germain 4||UCL|
|Feb 15, 2014||Paris Saint-Germain 3 - Valenciennes FC 0||Lig1|
|Montpellier Herault SC|
|Mar 9, 2014||LOSC Lille Métropole 2 - Montpellier Herault SC 0||Lig1|
|Mar 3, 2014||Olympique Lyonnais 0 - Montpellier Herault SC 0||Lig1|
|Feb 23, 2014||Montpellier Herault SC 2 - AC Ajaccio 0||Lig1|
|Feb 16, 2014||Rennes 2 - Montpellier Herault SC 2||Lig1|
|Feb 12, 2014||Cannes 1 - Montpellier Herault SC 0||FRAC|
|-||Mohamed Lamine Sissoko||Midfielder|
|5||Vitorino Hilton da Silva||Defender|
|18||Karim Ait Fana||Striker|
Times In SGT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed