PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN vs Dijon FCO
Venue: Parc des Princes
Date: 23rd October 2011
Kick-Off: 16:00 (GMT)
Paris Saint-Germain will put Thursday’s midweek stalemate in Bratislava to the back of their minds as they get back to domestic action against Dijon later today.
The 0-0 draw in the Europa League culminated in a sheer lack of clinical finishing in front of goal and naivety on the part of Clement Chantome and Siaka Tiene who were dismissed for two silly bookings. Nevertheless, the Ligue 1 leaders will fancy their chances this afternoon in continuing their superb form back on French soil.
With the club on a run of four consecutive wins in the league, this is PSG’s best run since the 2008/2009 season. The win in Corsica last weekend against Ajaccio demonstrated the club’s capability to not play particularly well, but still grind out results. After Kevin Gameiro gave his side a dream start by scoring within a minute, it was evident that the team took their foot off the gas and aloud their opponents back into proceedings. For large spells in the first-half, our hosts could have easily taken the lead. However, with the form Gameiro is showing and his aura in front of goal, his hat-trick ultimately made the difference in the 3-1 win.
It is almightily difficult to play well in every single game but the sign of a good team is one that can overcome that by still managing to pick up three points. Coach Antoine Kombouare was thrilled with his players and even more so on Thursday as they held on for a point with nine versus 11. Once again, another trait that must not go unnoticed as his men showed resiliency and spirit, when it could have been so easy to crumble. In truth, had it not been for some superb goalkeeping by Lukas Hrosso, they could have even nicked it.
All those positives will be taken into today’s game against a Dijon team coming off the back of a frenetic 5-3 defeat in Montpellier. Benjamin Corgnet’s brace had put the visitors 2-0 up within eleven minutes but they capitulated after Steven Paulle’s own goal and allowed MHSC back into the game.
Patrice Carteron’s side are currently sitting 12th in the table and although they have been largely inconsistent, they are a young team – average age of 25 – that has the quality to evolve into a decent outfit. PSG will be wary of midfielder Benjamin Corgnet who is his club’s top goalscorer, netting four times. Brice Jovial will lead the line of attack on his own for the promoted side.
There are a few absentees for the hosts. Mathieu Bodmer, who missed Thursday’s Europa tie is still out along with Blaise Matuidi, Guillaume Hoarau and Milan Bisevas. Sylvain Armad is also suspended for the game.
Kombouare will expect nothing less than a win and continue the title charge. However, as always, along with his winning mentality Tony’s humility was evident once again as he stressed the importance of respecting Dijon. He said in yesterday’s pre-match presser; “We are favourites but we must respect our opponents”. He will certainly make sure the Parisians do not underestimate Carteron’s side.
Note: Both sides will meet again this Wednesday at the Stade Gaston Gérard in the French League Cup.