Monaco-PSG Preview

I have to get to work, so I cannot write up a preview of the game. Therefore, I will admit, I cheated! Here is the Ligue 1 official preview from their site. Sorry I didn’t have time to do my own, but this should give you an idea of what to look for in the game. Remember, Live on Setanta!

 21:00 – AS Monaco FC / Paris Saint-Germain 

PSG’s away record in the principality leaves more than a little to be desired. Since they first travelled to Monaco in January 1975 – and suffered a 3-0 defeat – they have won just three times in 34 visits.

Yet this season the capital club’s results have given their supporters reason for optimism. Antoine Kombouaré’s side have taken ten points from three wins and a draw and are second to Bordeaux on goal difference alone.

Pressure

Experienced defender Sylvain Armand, however, would prefer it if everyone just pretended PSG weren’t there at all:

“As soon as people start talking about PSG, it quickly gets blown out of all proportions. Not within the squad, but around the team, the feeling on the streets of the capital. And all that can explode in our face,” said the former Nantes champion. “That’s where the extra pressure comes from. Last season we weren’t mature enough to finish in the top three. Every time we had the chance to step up, we couldn’t do it. I hope that if we get the same chances this season, we’ll be a bit older and wiser and deal with the situation better. The less people talk about PSG, the better.”

Tight-knit

Having seen internationals Jérôme Rothen and Mateja Kezman quit the club on the final day of the transfer market without being replaced, Antoine Kombouaré now has the tight-knit squad he wanted to compete with this season on the three domestic fronts.

He is, however, without the services of eight-million Euro summer signing from Sochaux, Mevlut Erding. The Turkey striker injured his left shoulder in the 3-0 win over Lille in Week 4 and underwent surgery on Wednesday. He is expected to be sidelined for at least three weeks. Last season’s top scorer Guillaume Hoarau is expected to make his first start o the campaign. Former Marseille and Saint-Etienne defender Zoumana Camara (deep vein thrombosis) is also missing.

Star signing

While PSG may prefer to stay out of the spotlight, Monaco were thrust into it on the final day of the summer mercato with the signing of Iceland international Eidur Gudjohnsen from Barcelona. The 31-year-old putting to pen to paper on a two-year deal and will wear the No.9 shirt.

“No.9: That puts a bit of extra pressure on me, but I think players perform better with a little pressure,” said the former Chelsea star. “At any rate, I’m very proud and I hope to do the shirt justice. The coach knows I can play as a striker, behind the striker or in midfield.”

Goal trouble

Monaco coach Guy Lacombe seems intent on playing his new forward as an out-and-out striker, given his side’s lack of success in front of goal this season: Monaco have scored just three times in four matches in the 2009-2010 campaign.

Two consecutive away defeats (no goals scored, five goals conceded) have been countered by two excellent home results in including Week 1’s 1-0 win over highly-rated Toulouse and 2-0 victory over Lorient in Week 3. Brazilian midfielder Nene, who spent last season on loan at Espanyol in the Spanish Liga has scored in each home game with Frédéric Nimani, scorer last season in the corresponding fixture against PSG, getting the second goal against Lorient.

Lacombe is without suspended Uruguayan midfielder Diego Perez.

Probable line-ups:

Monaco: S. Ruffier; Loto, Mongongu, Puygrenier, Dj. Traoré; E. Costa, Gosso; Alonso (c), Coutadeur (or Gudjohnsen), Nenê; Gudjohnsen (or Nimani)

Paris Saint-Germain: Coupet; Ceara, S. Traoré, M. Sakho, Armand; Giuly, Makeleler (c), Clément, Sessegnon; Hoarau, Luyindula

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3 Responses

  1. Thanks Thomas.

  2. No problem. I’ll post live on the match here as well.

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