Paris Saint-Germain will be looking to get back to winning ways when they play hosts to Troyes at Parc des Princes on Sunday.
Following a run of two draws, Paris Saint-Germain will be desperately looking to rekindle their winning form when they take on Troyes on Sunday. The game at Parc des Princes will serve as one of their remaining three matches before the season comes to a close.
PSG have already secured the title league thanks to a healthy 14-point lead over second-placed AS Monaco. But finishing the season on a strong note could be essential for Mauricio Pochettino, who is facing the prospect of being sacked at the end of the campaign.
The Argentine tactician has never really been able to get the best out of his team this season, which had resulted in early eliminations from the UEFA Champions League and Coupe de France. PSG have looked inconsistent in the league too, and they will once again be tested by Troyes this weekend.
Currently standing 14th in the league table, the newly-promoted side are well on their way to securing survival upon their return to the top flight. They have a healthy five-point lead over 18th placed Saint-Etienne and even a draw against PSG could go a long way in sealing their fate.
Troyes had lost to PSG 2-1 in the reverse fixture back in August, but the visitors are much more complete side and more than capable of pulling off an upset at Parc Des Princes. And here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over these two sides ahead of their crucial match-up in Ligue 1 this weekend.
Team News & Tactics
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_inside) May 7, 2022
Mauricio Pochettino could ring in a few changes from the side that drew with Strasbourg in the last game. Keylor Navas is gunning for a place in goal following Gianluigi Donnarumma’s poor outing last weekend. It could possibly be the last game at Parc des Princes for the former Real Madrid shot-stopper before he leaves the club in the summer.
While Pochettino is expected to persist with the 3-4-3 setup, there might be a change in the left wing-back slot, with Nuno Mendes coming in for Juan Bernat. The youngster, though, cannot afford to make any silly defensive errors or lose his markers as it often turns costly for his team.
There should be no changes in the back three of Marquinhos, Presnel Kimpembe and Sergio Ramos. But in midfield, Idrissa Gueye is back in contention after serving a suspension. It won’t be a surprise to see the former Everton man starting ahead of Danilo Pereira, thus accompanying Marco Verratti in the double-pivot.
Moving forward, the likes of Mauro Icardi and Julian Draxler are likely to be ruled out for this game due to injury. Angel Di Maria is fit to feature in this contest, but it appears PSG could persist with the front three of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.
However, Pochettino had offered the youngsters more game-time in these final few matches of the season. And with that in mind, we expect the likes of Xavi Simons, Edouard Michut and Dina Ebimbe to appear as second-half substitutes, whereas Di Maria remains an alternative to any of the front three attackers.
Probable Lineup (3-4-3): Navas; Marquinhos, Ramos, Kimpembe; Hakimi, Gueye, Verratti, Mendes; Messi, Mbappe, Neymar
Troyes are missing a few key players of their own including Youssouf Kone, Yoann Salmier, Karim Azamoum, Abdu Conte, Adil Rami, Gauthier Gallon and Lebo Mothiba all ruled for Sunday’s encounter against PSG.
— ESTAC Troyes (@estac_officiel) May 6, 2022
Tactically, coach Bruno Irles is unlikely to tinker with his 3-4-1-2 formation that should mirror PSG’s 3-4-3, thus making it easier to deny any numerical superiority to the opposition, especially in the middle third of the pitch.
It should also offer more defensive stability at the back, especially with wing-backs Issa Kabore and Xavier Chavalerin likely to operate in a more defensive role. Chavalerin does have a tendency to drop into central midfield and assist the second line of press.
The wing-backs, nevertheless, could be given the freedom to make marauding runs forward and offer driven crosses into the box for Ike Ugbo. Renaud Ripart should accompany Ugbo in the final third, with Tristan Dingome occupying the number ten role, ahead of the two central midfielders.
Probable Lineup (3-4-1-2): Moulin; Biancone, Palmer-Brown, Larouci; Kabore, Tardieu, Kouame, Chavalerin; Dingome; Ripart, Ugbo
- Paris Saint-Germain have won 68% of their matches against Troyes in Ligue 1, their second-highest ratio against a team faced at least 15 times after Caen (59%). PSG have won each of their last eight games against Troyes.
- PSG have won 27 of their last 29 home games against promoted sides, with their last defeat coming in May 2010 against Montpellier.
- After drawing their last two games against Lens and then Strasbourg, PSG could suffer three consecutive Ligue 1 games without a win for the first time since April 2019.
- Troyes have won just one of their last five Ligue 1, though it was their most recent game against Lille.
- PSG have won 18 of their last 20 league home games (D2). Following a draw in their last game at Parc des Princes, PSG have not gone two home matches without a win since February-April 2021 (L3).
Player to Watch
There has been a lot of speculation surrounding the future of Kylian Mbappe this week, with multiple reports suggesting the Frenchman is poised to sign a contract extension at Parc des Princes despite interest from Real Madrid. Although his entourage has dismissed such claims, it is apparent the player does view PSG as a viable option.
With that in mind, the attacker will look to end the season on a strong note. He has often emerged as the difference-maker in crunch situations for PSG this season, especially in Ligue 1, where he has already netted 24 goals.
Mbappe’s pace, trickery and ability to link up with his teammates in the final third could be invaluable for PSG as they look to break the shackles of the opponent. Troyes defenders must be careful of his runs in behind the backline.
Paris Saint-Germain 2-0 Troyes
Despite their form heading into this affair, this should be a walk in the park for Paris Saint-Germain. They have looked defensively vulnerable in recent weeks, but Troyes simply do not have enough attacking quality to cause problems for Sergio Ramos and co.
Offensively, PSG have been in brilliant form, with the front three of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Lionel Messi working in tandem to cause all sorts of problems for the opposing defences. We expect a similar form of dominance when PSG take on Troyes this weekend, with the hosts likely to emerge victorious by a comfortable margin.