first team / PSG - OL D-1

OL… at the Parc des Points

Published on the 27 October 2007 à 18:09 by R.B

OL will this weekend travel to the Parc as sole leader of L1. The wins and the points are accumulating for Juninho and co… which is very far from the case of the Parisians, who are still looking for their first home win of the season…

There is already a 13-point gap between the Parisians and the Lyonnais. For the men from the capital, there are questions, uncertainties, pressure, even fears after a really weak start to the season that has featured an astonishing incapacity to win at home: 3 draws and 3 losses; 4 goals scored and 10 conceded! Manager Paul Le Guen must be wondering what’s wrong with his squad. But after fielding an abnormally young side against Valenciennes, the former OL manager will need to be somewhat more conservative against the 6-time champions of France.

He should have Rothen, suspended for the VA match, back in the side. It’s also odds-on that captain Armand will be there, along with Frau, Diané… Does PSG have the means to scalp the league leaders? Surely anything can happen in a game of football… it could even be a turning point in their season. Former Olympiens Clément, Luyindula and Frau will obviously be highly motivated, but motivation doesn’t always translate into taking the 3 points. And they’ll also need to kick their Parc des Princes hoodoo – they haven’t won there so far this season. The last time they took the points at home was against Troyes (2-1) and dates back to May 19 in round 37 of last season!

While the capital club has a lot of worries, OL seems to have fewer and fewer. In the league, they have taken 22 from a possible 24 points in the last 8 rounds! Plus they just got back on track with a victory in the Champions League. Benzema just can’t stop scoring. Ben Arfa is coming into his own. Fabio Santos is settling well. Fred is back… the squad has oiled its cogs well, as has the staff. Without being the unstoppable winning machine of recent years, this OL has really started to hit its straps. Now they just need to keep the points rolling in to put a bit of distance between themselves and Nancy, Rennes and Bordeaux… In fact the Lyonnais have scored 3 goals in each of their last 3 league matches. So, after Runje, Ramé et Roma, will Landreau lengthen the list? The former Nantes man has already conceded 3 goals in a match on 2 occasions at the Parc this season…

The 6-time champions of France have begun the marathon well with the same starting XI on each occasion. Will Alain Perrin stick with the same side knowing he can rotate the squad against Caen in the Coupe de la Ligue ? Toulalan is still injured, so there will be 2 or 3 choices to make… one per line, most likely. That could bring some freshness to the team as well as bringing a larger group of players into the frame.

This fixture is no longer the massive clash it used to be, but it’s still one of the highlights of the season, for all the reasons noted above. Fans of both sides will be eager for the win… but for very different reasons.
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