Reigning French champions Paris Saint-Germain host Nice in Ligue 1 on Saturday night.
PSG have continued to rack up wins despite bouncing back into high gear in recent games. A newfound frugal streak – Christophe Galtier’s side have kept four consecutive clean sheets – has strengthened their grip on the top spot.
Under the returning Lucien Favre, Nice navigated through Europa Conference League qualification but at the cost of an unconvincing start domestically. The French Riviera side have picked up eight points from as many games, thanks in no small part to a plethora of failed finishes.
Here’s everything you need to know about the clash between Ligue 1’s strongest attack and a front line thoroughly failed.
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PSG vs Nice H2H Results (Last Five Games)
PSG: 2 wins
Kind: 2 wins
Current form (last five games)
PSG team news
Marco Verratti was ruled out of the Italy national team camp with a calf problem but will be suspended against Nice regardless of his fitness. Presnel Kimpembe is expected to be out until the end of October with a thigh strain, while Renato Sanches has a right adductor problem.
With a difficult trip to Benfica in the Champions League on the horizon, coupled with his recent continental trip during his international stint with Argentina, Galtier could use this weekend as his first opportunity to rest Lionel Messi.
PSG from 11 (3-4-3): Donnarumma; Ramos, Marquinhos, Danilo; Hakimi, Ruiz, Vitinha, Mendes; Sarabia, Mbappe, Neymar.
Bank: Navas, Bernat, Messi, Mukiele, Soler, Bitshiabu, Zaire-Emery, Ekitike, Gharbi.
Nice team news
Jean-Clair Todibo went down in the record books with a red card nine seconds after Nice’s last defeat by Angers. The former Barcelona centre-back took longer to trudge off the pitch and will serve out his suspension this weekend.
Aaron Ramsey is one of just two players to score for Nice in Ligue 1 this season. The former Arsenal midfielder has missed the club’s last four games but is set to return this weekend after suffering a hamstring injury and will rejoin Nice’s burgeoning line-up of former Premier League players – including Ross Barkley, Joe Bryan and Mario Lemina.
Nice starting XI (4-4-2): flattery; Lotomba, Viti, Dante, Bard; Pepe, Lemina, Thuram, Diop; Laborde, Delort.
Bank: Bulka, Bryan, Atal, Beka Beka, Rosario, Barkley, Boudaoui, Brahimi, Ramsey.
As always in Ligue 1, the odds are in PSG’s favour, but Nice can at least take solace in the venue of this match, which is somewhere other than their home ground. Lucien Favre’s side have collected seven of their eight points away from home this season.
It should be stressed that PSG are not exactly convincing on home soil and have a 25-game unbeaten run at the Parc des Princes in Ligue 1. Against the team with the fewest goals without penalties in France (just two), PSG are the big favorites to extend their lossless run.
Prediction: PSG 2-0 Nice