MX23RW : Sunday, May 16 03:38:10| >> :120:19728:19728:
Apr 18, 2021 at 12pm UK at Parc des Princes
PSGParis Saint-Germain
3-2
St EtienneSaint-Etienne
Mbappe (79', 87' pen.), Icardi (90+4')
Kimpembe (85')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Bouanga (78'), Hamouma (90+1')
Neyou (57')

Preview: Paris Saint-Germain vs. Saint-Etienne - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Paris Saint-Germain and Saint-Etienne, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Having dumped the Champions League holders out in the quarter-finals of the competition, Paris Saint-Germain resume their quest for domestic success on Sunday when they welcome Saint-Etienne to the Parc des Princes.

Les Parisiens currently sit four points adrift of leaders Lille, while Saint-Etienne have boosted their survival prospects with three wins from their last four.


Match preview

Paris Saint-Germain's Neymar celebrates after the match against Bayern Munich with Mauricio Pochettino in the Champions League on April 13, 2021© Reuters

Neymar in particular must have gone to bed wondering how he ended the second leg against Bayern Munich with zero goals to his name, as the Bavarian giants set up a nervy 45 minutes for PSG thanks to Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting's 40th-minute goal at the Parc des Princes.

However, that goal was not enough for an injury-hit Bayern to make lightning strike twice against last season's beaten finalists, as PSG's trio of strikes at the Allianz Arena saw them book their spot in the semi-finals on away goals, where they now face another behemoth of a showdown with Manchester City for the right to play in Istanbul.

It would be inconceivable for PSG to end the season without a trophy to their name - although they still have the Coupe de France in their sights - and despite a 4-1 win over Strasbourg in the league last time out, they remain four points behind Lille with only six matches left to play.

Les Dogues failed to extend that gap to six points as they could not get the better of Montpellier HSC on Friday evening, although PSG have unfathomably lost their last three league matches at the Parc des Princes, and the capital outfit could now lose four top-flight games in a row at home for the first time ever.

However, Mauricio Pochettino's side are the only team in the division so far to break the 70-goal mark, and they have not shared the spoils in a fixture since drawing 1-1 to Saint-Etienne back in January, although Les Verts are starting to pick up points when it matters most.

Saint-Etienne manager Claude Puel pictured in February 2021© Reuters

Wahbi Khazri's campaign appeared to be going from bad to worse as he battled various injury woes, but the Tunisia international is now hitting his stride at the perfect time for an eternally-grateful Claude Puel.

Indeed, the former Sunderland man single-handedly put Bordeaux to the sword last time out, as he struck a hat-trick after Hwang Ui-jo had put Les Girondins ahead from 12 yards, and Zaydou Youssouf made an impact off the bench to strike a fourth for a dominant Saint-Etienne in a 4-1 triumph.

Les Verts have been flirting with relegation throughout the campaign, but they have now opened up a nine-point gap between themselves and the bottom three and should have no trouble prolonging their stay in the big time, although they still have to face Montpellier, Marseille and Lille before the campaign concludes.

Having taken the spoils in three of their last four matches in Ligue 1, the 13th-placed Verts are hardly short of confidence, and Puel's resurgent machine have also claimed four victories from their last five on the road - with four clean sheets to boot - although that defensive mettle will be tested to the extreme this weekend.

As mentioned, PSG were held to a 1-1 draw by Saint-Etienne in their first match of 2021, but they are unbeaten in their last 15 against Les Verts and will be aiming to score for the 21st Ligue 1 game in a row against their upcoming opponents.

Paris Saint-Germain Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W

Paris Saint-Germain form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L

Saint-Etienne Ligue 1 form:
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W



Team News

Neymar in action for PSG on April 3, 2021© Reuters

Neymar will serve the second of his two-game ban for his sending off against Lille, and he is joined on the naughty step by Idrissa Gueye and Leandro Paredes, who have been handed bans for an accumulation of bookings.

However, Marco Verratti is fit again after recovering from COVID-19 and could deputise in a deeper role alongside Ander Herrera, especially seeing as Danilo Pereira is likely to continue at centre-back with Marquinhos in the treatment room.

Moise Kean was restricted to a substitute appearance against Bayern but is expected to fill in here with Neymar suspended, and Alessandro Florenzi is in line to return at right-back, while Mauro Icardi and Layvin Kurzawa could both make the squad as well.

Abdou Diallo was also forced off in the second leg against Bayern, so Mitchel Bakker should be given the opportunity to impress in defence, while Sergio Rico will deputise in goal for the injured Keylor Navas.

Saint-Etienne lost midfielder Yvan Neyou to injury in the dying embers of their win over Bordeaux, and with the 24-year-old confirmed to be nursing an ankle sprain, Youssouf is sure to deputise in the engine room.

Neyou is joined in a well-occupied Saint-Etienne treatment room by Anthony Modeste (muscle) and Ryad Boudebouz (ankle), while long-term absentees Alpha Sissoko and Yvann Macon are working their way back from knee injuries.

With two goalkeepers in Stefan Bajic and Jessy Moulin both out of contention, 20-year-old Etienne Green is set to make only his third ever professional appearance at the home of the champions.

Paris Saint-Germain possible starting lineup:
Rico; Florenzi, Pereira, Kimpembe, Bakker; Herrera, Verratti; Di Maria, Rafinha, Kean; Mbappe

Saint-Etienne possible starting lineup:
Green; Debuchy, Moukoudi, Cisse, Silva; Youssouf; Hamouma, Aouchiche, Camara, Bouanga; Khazri


SM words green background

We say: Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 Saint-Etienne

PSG have bigger fish to fry heading into the final few weeks of the season, but failing to retain the Ligue 1 title would be an early blot on Pochettino's notebook. The Argentine will be forced into some rotation and may choose to switch others around given their impending Coupe de France quarter-final, but they should still have too much for Saint-Etienne - albeit an in-form one - and we can only back a comfortable win for the capital side.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data


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How you voted: PSG vs St Etienne

Paris Saint-Germain
84.7%
Draw
13.9%
Saint-Etienne
1.4%
72
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Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe celebrates scoring their first goal on February 16, 2021
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Lille362310362224079
2Paris Saint-GermainPSG36244880285276
3MonacoMonaco36235874413374
4Lyon362110574383673
5Marseille361511105044656
6Lens361511105551456
7Rennes3615101149381155
8Montpellier HSCMontpellier361311125861-350
9Nice36147154749-249
10Metz361210144245-346
11Saint-EtienneSt Etienne36129154253-1145
12Angers36128163753-1644
13Reims36915124144-342
14Brest36117185064-1440
15Bordeaux36116193755-1839
16StrasbourgStrasbourg36108184657-1138
17Lorient36108184766-1938
18NantesNantes36813154253-1137
19Nimes3698193864-2635
RDijon3639242469-4518

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