Montpellier at Paris Saint Germain Preview and Predictions 04-22-2017
By Eskender Tamrat
When: 11:00AM EST, Saturday, April 22nd, 2017
Where: Parc des Princes, Paris, France
Betting Line: OFF
TV Coverage: beIN Sports
Paris Saint-Germain (24-5-4) could climb up to the summit of Ligue 1, for at least a day, when they host Montpellier HSC (10-9-14) in Saturday's early fixture. The Parisians leveled on points with leaders AS Monaco FC (24-5-3), who will play at Olympique Lyonnais (17-3-12) on Sunday, after salvaging a late winner against FC Metz (9-9-15) on Tuesday.
But PSG will not take things for granted against Montpellier on Saturday. Two successive wins against relegation zone sides Stade Malherbe Caen (9-6-18) and FC Lorient (9-4-20) helped La Paillade to move eight points clear of the danger zone. They also inflicted PSG's worst league defeat of the season when the sides met in December with a 3-0 success against the champions.
William Rémy could miss the trip to French capital because of lack of fitness, while midfielder Adrien Rabiot is on the sidelines from the home side.
Montpellier recorded back-to-back crucial wins against direct rivals in the battle to avoid relegation. The 2-0 win at Caen was a hard-fought one, as they only netted the insurance goal two minutes from time. The scoreline was the same last Saturday when they halted Lorient's improbable rise, as they all but secured the points before the half hour mark with Ryad Boudebouz scoring his eleventh goal of the campaign before Issac Mbenza adding a second as early as the 27th minute.
Considering their last two home games will see them face LOSC Lille (10-7-16), who have been impressive on the road in 2017, and Lyon, Jean-Louis Gasset will be delighted with the eight points cushion from the relegation zone with only five matches left to play in the season.
The four-time defending champions are doing their bit in the title race. They picked up their seventh successive league win – unbeaten in the league in 2017 with only two draws from 14 matches – in a dramatic fashion in mid-week. Midfield workhorse Blaise Matuidi scored in the third minute of extra-time to secure a hard-fought 3-2 win at Metz.
PSG were pegged back from a two-goal lead in the final twelve minutes, with Metz's equalizer arrived two minutes from time, but Matuidi, who only scored twice in the league before Tuesday, netted his second of the night to give PSG's title hopes a huge boost. After facing Montpellier, PSG will play at third-placed OGC Nice (21-10-2), who are yet to lose at home.
1. Monaco's (90) superior goal difference over that of PSG's (69) could be vital as the title race is destined to go down the wire.
2. PSG won each of their last seven games in all competition after the unforgettable collapse at Nou Camp.
3. Alongside Olympique de Marseille's (14-9-10) Florian Thauvin, Boudebouz scored a league-high nine goals with his left foot.
With Monaco's free-scoring season presenting them with an edge in the closing stage of the title race – they have to drop points in at least two of their six remaining games for PSG to stand a chance – Unai Emery's side will not afford any setbacks. We should expect another uneven game at Paris with Montpellier expecting to struggle like En Avant de Guingamp (12-8-13) did a couple of weeks ago.
PSG 3, Montpellier 0
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| Montpellier |
@ Paris Saint Germain
| - |
| - |
| 1600 |
| - |
| - |
| - |
| - |
| 1400 |