Newly crowned champions of France, Paris Saint Germain will be hoping to pick up their 25th victory in the league this season when they travel to Strasbourg on Friday. The match will take place at the Stade de la Meinau on the 30th of April. A 1-1 draw with Lens in the last match was enough for PSG to reclaim their league title. Meanwhile, Strasbourg are gunning for the European spots and are currently sixth in the table with four matches left in the season.
It has been a glorious season for Strasbourg in Ligue 1 as they have punched above their weight considerably. Having played 34 games so far, they’ve picked up 56 points, which sees them occupying the sixth spot in the table. They trail fifth-placed Nice by just a single point as their hopes of securing Europa League football for next season are still going strong. Strasbourg are also just three points behind Monaco in the final Champions League spot on the table.
Since being promoted to the top flight back in 2017, Strasbourg have finished mostly in the mid-table zone. Strasbourg have never finished higher than 10th in the league, securing the 15th place twice, 11th place once, and the 10th place once since making it back up top. Therefore, it will be more than a fairy tale story if they managed to secure European football for next season.
Julian Stephan’s men are arriving into this game following a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Lille last Sunday. Strasbourg did pretty well to stall LOSC Lille for most of the game, but Zeki Celik scored in the 87th minute and his goal proved to be the match-winner as they stole an important point away from the visitors.
Strasbourg’s home record has been beyond excellent in the domestic league. They have secured 34 points in the 17 games that they have played at the Stade de la Meinau. Only PSG, with 47 points, and Rennes, with 37 points, have a better record than Le Racing on home turf in Ligue 1 this season.
With that being said, Strasbourg have a deplorable record against newly-crowned champions PSG. They have lost 16 of their last 23 matches against the side from the capital. Paris Saint German have also found the back of the net at least four times in their last three matches against Strasbourg on their own home ground.
Paris Saint Germain, on the other hand, have already been crowned as champions of Ligue 1 with a 1-1 draw against Lens on Saturday. Lionel Messi’s strike in the second half put PSG into the lead and although they considered a late equaliser from Lens, the single point was enough for them to reclaim the French top division title which 78 points from their 34 matches this season so far.
The Parisian outfit have unquestionably been the most dominant side in France over the last decade. They have now won eight of the last 10 league titles with only Monaco and LOSC Lille denying them in 2017 in 2021 respectively. They have also secured the title for the 10th time in their history, and along with Saint Etienne, they are on top of the list of clubs with the most league title wins, the bulk of which have arrived following the Qatari takeover in 2011.
Reclaiming the league title from the hands of LOSC Lille must be seen as a huge success for PSG. However, when you take into account the superstars that they have in the squad compared to the rest of the league, it has been yet another poor season for Paris Saint German, whose primary aspirations of succeeding in Europe have fallen short once again.
Despite leading most of the tie, PSG suffered a calamitous collapse in the final 20 minutes against Real Madrid which allowed Karim Benzema to score a hattrick that knocked them out of the competition they desperately wanted to win.
The latest Champions League humiliation was more than enough for PSG ultras, who decided to cut ties with the club. Several superstars like Neymar, Messi, and Sergio Ramos were booed on their own home turf. The fans also surprisingly vacated the Parc des Princes within 10 minutes of PSG winning the title and did not opt to participate in the celebration.
PSG have also failed to impress in two domestic cup competitions this season. This has rendered Mauricio Pochettino’s future with the club extremely uncertain heading into the summer. There’s also a clear cause of friction between most of the players and the supporters, and it will also be interesting to see whether Kylian Mbappe decides to join Real Madrid or extend his stay in Paris.
Despite these uncertainties on the pitch, PSG are not under any real pressure on the pitch while heading into the final four matches of the season. Following the game against Strasbourg, they will end their 2021/22 campaign with matches against Troyes, Montpellier, and Metz. However, they will be expected to remain professional and end their season on as positive a note as possible after all the turmoil they had to go through recently.
Although it is arriving towards the late stages of the season, PSG’s famed attacking trio of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Lionel Messi are finally starting to click. In the match against Clermont, both Mbappe and Neymar netted hattricks while the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner set up three goals for his teammates in the match and scored the goal that landed the title for PSG against Lens.
SBG vs PSG, Ligue 1 2021/22
Date: 30th April, 2022
Time: 12:30 AM IST
Venue: Stade de la Meinau, Strasbourg
Strasbourg Ligue 1 form:
Strasbourg form (all competitions):
Paris Saint Germain Ligue 1 form:
Paris Saint Germain form (all competitions):
Strasbourg wins: 3
Paris Saint Germain wins: 16
SBG vs PSG TEAM NEWS:
Strasbourg Team News: Strasbourg will have to deal with plenty of absentees when they face PSG at home. The likes of Dimitri Lienard, Jean-Eudes Aholou, Nordine Kandil, Marvin Elimbi, Abdul Majeed Waris, and Ismael Doukoure are all expected to miss this important encounter on Friday.
However, the silver lining is that the hosts did not pick up fresh injury concerns against Lille the last time around. As a result, it won’t be surprising to see them entering this contest with an unchanged XI.
Former PSG man Kevin Gameiro has scored nine goals in the domestic league this season and is expected to lead the frontline for Strasbourg. Meanwhile, Ludovic Ajorque, is also expected to find his name on the teamsheet from the start of the game as he has found the back of the net on 12 occasions in the domestic league during the 2021-22 campaign.
Paris Saint Germain Team News: PSG suddenly find themselves without the services of a whole host of players. The treatment room appears to be at full capacity once again. Midfielders Leandro Paredes and Julian Draxler are set to miss the remainder of the season after getting operated on. They will also be kept company in the medical room by Ismael Gharbi and Layvin Kurzawa.
The visitors are also sweating on the fitness of Abdou Diallo who is in a race against time to make it back fit for this visit to Strasbourg. Idrissa Gueye is also expected to miss this clash through suspension as he has accumulated too many yellow cards. Therefore, Danilo could slot in the middle of the park alongside Marco Verratti.
Gianluigi Donnarumma is expected to wear the gloves for this game while the frontline will be led by three superstars in Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
Strasbourg possible starting lineup:
Sels; Guilbert, Perrin, Nyamsi, Djiku, Caci; Thomasson, Prcic, Bellegarde; Gameiro, Ajorque
Paris Saint Germain possible starting lineup:
Donnarumma; Marquinhos, Ramos, Kimpembe; Hakimi, Verratti, Danilo, Mendes; Messi, Mbappe, Neymar
PSG may have already landed the title but this is still a huge match regardless as Strasbourg continue to fight to secure a historic European place for next season. They have shown plenty of guts and hearts this season and despite their poor past record against Paris Saint Germain, they will be expected to push considerably above their weight.
PSG have also had several moments of lapses in concentration and have dropped points. Strasbourg will be hoping to capitalize on such opportunities.