Friday, August 9, 2013

Montpellier vs PSG

Paris Saint-Germain will begin the defence of their Ligue 1 title with a trip to Montpellier HSC on Friday evening.

The reigning champions have appointed a new manager during the summer, with former France coach Laurent Blanc replacing Carlo Ancelotti, who joined Real Madrid.

Les Parisiens secured the first trophy of the new campaign on Saturday with a 2-1 victory over Bordeaux in the Trophee des Champions.

Montpellier will also have a new manager in their dugout, after Rene Girard was replaced by former Nancy coach Jean Fernandez.

Fernandez could name former PSG defender Siaka Tiene in his side, following his move from the French capital this summer. Fellow summer signings Victor Montano and Djamel Bakar are in line to start.

Blanc could hand starts to summer signings Edinson Cavani, Marquinhos and Lucas Digne.

Possible lineups

Montpellier: Jourdren; Congre, El Kaoutari, Hilton, Tiene; Mezague, Stambouli, Martin; Cabella, Herrera, Camara

PSG: Sirigu; Maxwell, Marquinhos, Thiago Silva, Jallet; Motta, Matuidi, Lucas, Pastore; Cavani, Ibrahimovic

PSG kick off their title defense in the all new Ligue 1 season against 2011-12 champions Montpellier in a tough first test for the reigning French champions.

After spending nearly 100 million euro’s this summer, PSG will look to showcase the talent they brought into the already strong squad boasting the likes of Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibramovich. Till the 2010 season, PSG were just a mid-team table that posed no serious threats to the then dominant French duo of Lyon-Marseille. But the tide seems to have changed after the side was taken over by Nasser Al-Khelaifi in 2011, with the side aiming to retain their third French title in a row.

This summer, PSG have signed Edinson Cavani from Napoli, while Marquinhos and Lucas Digne have also joined the club in big-money deals. These additions have made the French champions a side to watch out for the in the Uefa Champions League.

On the other hand, Montpellier will be looking to reclaim their title they won in 2011, but keeping in mind the threat PSG possess up-front they know they have a lot of work to do. One of the major concerns would be as to dealing with Ibramovich and Cavani up-front, if newly PSG boss Laurent Blanc decides to play them together, I am sure the Ligue 1 defenders are going to have a tough time.

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