Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint-Germain will be eager to avoid a Coupe de la Ligue hangover when they host struggling Evian on Wednesday.
Laurent Blanc’s men lifted some of the pressure on coach Laurent Blanc by claiming a 2-1 victory against Lyon last Saturday to win the trophy for the fourth time in the club’s history.
Blanc had come in for criticism prior to the cup triumph after PSG were eliminated from the UEFA Champions League on away goals by Chelsea, a setback that was followed by a league loss at Lyon.
However, Blanc revealed after the success at the Stade de France that he is keen to extend his contract with the capital club, and will be hopeful of furthering his cause with a victory against relegation-threatened Evian.
A win would put PSG 10 points clear of second-placed Monaco and on the brink of a second successive Ligue 1 title.
But the hosts will be wary of an Evian team that are not yet sure of top-flight survival and has developed a reputation as a bogey team for PSG in recent years.
Indeed, Evian handed PSG their first league defeat of the season with a 2-0 triumph back in December and also eliminated them from last season’s Coupe de France with a penalty shootout win in the quarter-final.
PSG are not the only side to succumb to a shock defeat at the hands of the Annecy club, as they also stunned Monaco with a 1-0 success late last month.
The visitors have never secured a victory at the Parc des Princes, though, and will desperate to end that record in order to ease their relegation fears.
Pascal Dupraz’s men are five points clear of the drop zone in 16th with five games to play and can ill-afford a slump in form, especially with 18th place Sochaux unbeaten in their last four outings.
Evian will have the advantage of a near fully-fit squad, with Brazilian striker Tulio de Melo, who has a knee injury, their only absentee.
PSG will be without influential midfielder Thiago Motta through suspension, the Italy international joining injured top scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic on the sidelines.
Ibrahimovic is expected to again miss out with a thigh problem, meaning that Edinson Cavani will most likely continue as the main striker after netting both goals in the cup final.
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