PSG kick off Ligue 1 weekend against Angers
The past and present are not on the side of Angers for Friday's opener to the latest round of Ligue 1. The visitors to the Parc de Princes have not beaten PSG since 1975 and Mauricio Pochettino's side have only lost the single Ligue 1 match in the past 16. Although that was the most recent game against Rennes, it will be a very different PSG team on Friday.
South American World Cup qualifiers taking place in the early hours of game-day in Paris means that the team's South American contingent including Neymar and Lionel Messi will still be up in the air when it is time for PSG to try some Angers management and temporarily increase their lead at the top of the table to nine.
🎙️ Mauricio Pochettino: "We hope to be in a better situation to avoid the counter attack and to be able to keep creating chances and be more clinical" 👊 pic.twitter.com/JufOmf8hUO— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) October 14, 2021
Kylian Mbappe is set to be there with the forward finding his goal-scoring mojo for France with two strikes to secure a UEFA Nations League victory. Mbappe was once a talented 17-year-old making his name in Ligue 1, Angers have their own young striker with Mohamed-Ali Cho who has two goals in the league already this season and is now starring for the French U-21 team.
🔥 Angers winger, Mohamed-Ali Cho 🥊, is the Next Big Thing in @Ligue1_ENG : 17, a France U-21 player already, and set to be in action against PSG on Friday from 2:50PM ET / 11:50AM PT. 🍿 pic.twitter.com/ItnWohl4eV— beIN SPORTS USA (@beINSPORTSUSA) October 13, 2021
Fourth-placed Angers could be tough nuts to crack for PSG with the team having conceded the least number of shots to opposition sides in Ligue 1 and having managed four clean sheets from nine games.
💥 PSG vs. Angers - Live on beIN SPORTS on Friday from 2:50PM ET / 11:50AM PT ⚽️📺👈
Lyon or Monaco: Who wins Ligue 1's weekend mega match-up?
Saturday's mega-mega match-up in Ligue 1 pits two heavyweight teams whose fans will demand a top-four finish and even a title charge were PSG to stumble at the summit of the standings. Lyon have assembled one of the most exciting teams in France, with one of the most exciting players. Houssem Aouar, who rediscovered his form with a man-of-the-match performance against Saint Etienne in the last round of action.
Monaco ooze quality across the pitch but are very old-school in the way the team goes about their business up front with a double-dose of international class with the French / German alliance of Wissam Ben Yedder and Kevin Volland. Quite simply, when these two are in the mood then Monaco win, which has been the case of late with three straight Ligue 1 victories. Ben Yedder was on a particularly hot streak with five goals in the past four Ligue 1 games for Monaco.
👉 Lyon vs. Monaco: Live on beIN SPORTS on Saturday from 2:30PM ET / 11:30AM PT ☝️🔥⚽️
Can Jonathan David continue golden glut of goals for Lille?
After a sluggish start to the season under new coach, Jocelyn Gourvennec, Lille - the reigning Ligue 1 champions let's not forget - are officially on a roll with three wins from three. It would not be too much of a flag-waving exercise to declare that the revival is currently North American-inspired with Timothy Weah now a regular feature in the Lille line-up and Canada's Jonathan David in rocket-man form for both club and country.
David scored in Canada's 4-1 win over Panama on Wednesday to continue a silver streak that sees the 21-year-old equal top of the Ligue 1 scoring charts with six, having scored five goals in the past three Ligue 1 games for Lille. According to Gourvennec, David won't be slowing down anytime soon, despite a transatlantic trek to be ready for Saturday's match against struggling Clermont Foot - "he gives his all, all the time, at training… in matches… When I tell him to slow things down a bit he asks me why?"
Praise must also be given for the work of the Lille midfield which is enjoying the return of the inspirational Renato Sanches after injury and also the industry of Benjamin Andre who is topping the charts for winning the most number of duels, and committing the most number of fouls to boot.
🇫🇷⚽️ Clermont Foot vs. Lille - Live on beIN SPORTS on Saturday at 10:50AM ET / 7:50AM PT 💥
Konrad de la Fuente with chance to book a place for Le Classique
The biggest concern for Marseille coach, Jorge Sampaoli, may not be back-to-back defeats in Ligue 1 and just one point from nine, but the teams that Marseille lost to - Lens and Lille, two rivals for the Champions League places. Along with an eye on the past, the Argentinean coach will also have an eye on the future too and next weekend's Le Classique against PSG in the Velodrome.
👑👑👑 The King @didierdrogba hits the back of the net and then the trademark celebration.#MatchDesHéros 💙 pic.twitter.com/jCT6iog73N— Olympique de Marseille 🇬🇧 🇺🇸 (@OM_English) October 13, 2021
All this adds extra pressure on Marseille to come through on Sunday against a disciplined Lorient team that has only lost once in nine games this season. With a lot of Marseille midfielders and forwards having been on international duty, the chance might be out there for Konrad de la Fuente to return to the starting line up with the young winger currently out of favor with club and country. A pitch perfect performance against Lorient could be rewarded with the chance to face a former teammate next weekend - Lionel Messi.
🔥 Marseille vs. Lorient: Live on beIN SPORTS on Sunday at 2:30PM ET / 11:30AM PT 🔥