After an incredibly intense month of April, Paris Saint-Germain now has weeklong breaks to prepare for games. No more having to play every three or four days with no European or domestic cup competitions to compete in (with exception to the Coupe de France final at the end of May of course). So with destiny in our own hands, we have three games to wrap up a third straight Ligue 1 title.
Guingamp, last year’s French cup winners, make the trip to the capital tonight. We are against a team sat in mid-table with very little to play for. They will be no pushovers by any means but this is a game where we have to take maximum points from. There is no room for error, the players all need to be signing from the same hymn sheet. Since the exit to Barcelona in the Champions League, the lads have done exactly that. That vain was continued last week with the return of Zlatan Ibrahimovic in what was a comfortable victory away to Nantes. That was perceived as one of our trickier clashes in this final sprint but we came out of it in flying colours.
Coach Laurent Blanc said he will be fielding his strongest teams from now on, starting tonight. He will be without David Luiz, Thiago Motta and Gregory Van der Wiel though so he will have to tinker slightly. Marquinhos will continue at centre-back in Luiz’s absence, Serge Aurier to fill in at full-back and perhaps Yohan Cabaye or even Marco Verratti to plug Motta’s void.
The coach in his pre-match presser said yesterday; “I am only focusing on this match so there’s no looking ahead and calculating on the remaining matches. I will be looking to put out the best possible team to beat Guingamp who, don’t forget, beat us in the first match this season. They are a good team and we respect them”.
He is right to point that defeat out. EAG were the first side to beat us in the league last December, just after our 3-1 humbling in the Camp Nou which relegated us to the runners-up spot in the group stage of the Champions League.
Title rivals Lyon are away to Caen tomorrow afternoon. We have to assume they will get the win there so victory tonight is imperative, especially to put the pressure on them.