Toulouse-Paris Saint-Germain Preview: Ancelotti's men hope to cement Ligue 1 top spot
The capital giants travel to Stadium Municipal to face Alain Casanova's plucky outfit, who will be seeking revenge for last week's cup defeat
By Mohammed Ali
Ninkov, Aurier, Yago, M'Bengue
Braaten, Didot, Sirieix, Tabanou
Jallet, Armand, Sakho, Maxwell
Lucas Moura, Matuidi, Verratti, Menez
Toulouse coach Alain Casanova possesses a defensive dilemma ahead of the visit of Paris Saint-Germain to Stadium Municipal on Friday evening.
With Aymen Abdennour at the Africa Cup of Nations with Tunisia, and Jonathan Zebina still on the sidelines with injury, it leaves 20-year-old Steeve Yago as the only first-team centre-back remaining in the squad. Both Etienne Capoue and Serge Aurier have filled in that role in recent weeks, and it will be up to Casanova to again draft in players in unfamiliar positions.
With Moussa Sissoko now departed to Newcastle United, Etienne Didot will become a mainstay in midfield, with the threatening Franck Tabanou and Wissam Ben Yedder aiming to continue their fruitful relationship.
PSG coach Carlo Ancelotti has been dealt a blow with the news that Thiago Motta is out "for at least 10 days" following his injury in the 1-0 win over Lille on Sunday.
Marco Verratti should continue his alongside Blaise Matuidi, with Thiago Silva's absence meaning Sylvain Armand - who captained the side last week - will start at centre-back.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Toulouse sit tenth in the Ligue 1 table, but are unbeaten in their last four league encounters.
- Le Tefece have not beaten PSG in a competitive fixture since October 2009, with les Parisiens winning all seven encounters since.
- Toulouse were dumped out of the Coupe de France by Ancelotti's side last week thanks to goals from Ezequiel Lavezzi, Kevin Gameiro and Javier Pastore.
- PSG sit top of Ligue 1 - albeit only on goal difference - from Olympique Lyonnais.
- Les Parisiens have not lost a competitive fixture since their December 1 defeat to Nice.
- That game was the last time Salvatore Sirigu conceded a goal in Ligue 1 - with the goalkeeper yet to be breached in 775 minutes - a new club record.
- PSG will face fierce rivals Olympique de Marseille twice in February after being drawn against Elie Baup's side in the Coupe de France.
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Top 3 Predictions
Toulouse FC 0-2 Paris Saint-Germain
- 16.05 %
Toulouse FC 1-3 Paris Saint-Germain
- 14.35 %
Toulouse FC 0-3 Paris Saint-Germain
- 12.64 %
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Feb 23, 2014||Toulouse FC 2 - Paris Saint-Germain 4|
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Sep 28, 2013||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Toulouse FC 0|
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Feb 1, 2013||Toulouse FC 0 - Paris Saint-Germain 4|
|France - Coupe de France (FRAC)||Jan 23, 2013||Paris Saint-Germain 3 - Toulouse FC 1|
|France - Ligue 1 (FRA1)||Sep 14, 2012||Paris Saint-Germain 2 - Toulouse FC 0|
|Apr 12, 2014||FC Sochaux 2 - Toulouse FC 0||FRA1|
|Apr 5, 2014||Toulouse FC 1 - LOSC Lille Métropole 2||FRA1|
|Mar 29, 2014||AC Ajaccio 2 - Toulouse FC 2||FRA1|
|Mar 22, 2014||Toulouse FC 1 - Evian Thonon Gaillard 1||FRA1|
|Mar 15, 2014||Stade Rennais FC 2 - Toulouse FC 3||FRA1|
|14||François Paxti Sirieix||Midfielder|
|7||Wissam Ben Yedder||Midfielder|
|23||Gregory van der Wiel||Defender|
The young France Under-21 goalkeeper has come on leaps and bounds in the past 12 months. Scorer of one league goal - that is more than Marco Verratti - Ahamada has become a real prospect between the sticks in this campaign. Will need to be in great form to stop PSG's great attacking force though.
Aside from the goalkeeping brilliance of Salvatore Sirigu and the goals plundered in by Zlatan Ibrahimovic, no other player in the PSG squad has become so vital in the club's quest to clinch a first title since 1994. Tireless in midfield and a great contributor to both attack and defence, it is clear to see why this man is becoming more and more indispensable with each week.
Carlo Ancelotti's side might be winning, but they have not exactly started 2013 in the devastating form that was expected with the addition of Lucas Moura. They possess a very good record against Toulouse though and will be expected to pick up all three points again.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed