Paris Saint-Germain visit Lorient in Ligue 1 on Saturday, in the club’s first game since the terror attacks in the French capital last Friday.
French officials report 129 people were killed, with hundreds more injured after what appeared to be co-ordinated assaults in the French capital and the Ligue 1 champions have announced they will wear special shirts to commemorate the victims.
The words “Je suis Paris” [I am Paris] will be printed beneath the club crest in a show of support.
Javier Pastore and Salvatore Sirigu were two PSG players who lost people close to them in the attacks and the Italy international goalkeeper hopes the routine of getting back to work can help ease some of the pain.
“Everybody knows I knew some who were killed in the attack. People I knew but also that other players knew because they were owners of a quite well-known restaurant in Paris, especially in our borough,” Sirigu told reporters.
“We are fearful because we are human beings like everyone else, but there are things in life that we have to carry on and there’s nothing to say. Pain can ease off also when you keep working and trying to slot back into a routine.”
This weekend’s encounter represents the chance for the champions to build on their fine form. PSG have dominated Ligue 1 in the opening months of the season, winning 11 and drawing the other two of their 13 games so far.
Their sublime run of form has moved them 10 points clear of second-placed Lyon – who travel to Nice on Friday – and midfielder Adrien Rabiot has set his sights on three points once more at the weekend.
“We all know that when a team comes to play against Paris, it’s not the same team, even last in the league doesn’t play like the bottom of the league against Paris,” Rabiot told beIN Sports.
“Up until now, our season has been almost perfect, so we have to keep going.”
PSG coach Laurent Blanc will have to make do without the services of Marco Verratti due to an ankle injury and his absence means Rabiot is likely to get the nod in midfield and he is keen to prove his worth.
“Purely in terms of numbers, we’re a man down in midfield, so I should get more playing time,” he added.
“The coach knows I’m there and that he can count on me. If Marco isn’t fit, then I’m able to come in.”
Should he feature as expected, Saturday’s encounter will be Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s 100th Ligue 1 appearance and the Sweden star will be keen to build on his fine performances in recent weeks.
The striker, who netted three times across the two legs as Sweden defeated Denmark in a play-off to reach Euro 2016, has scored in his last six Ligue 1 games – his best run in the French top flight – and leads the goalscoring charts with nine goals in eight appearances.
Lorient were beaten twice by PSG in 2014-15, losing the home game 2-1 before a 3-1 defeat at the Parc des Princes in the reverse fixture.
Key Opta stats:
– Paris Saint-Germain are unbeaten in their last seven league games against Lorient (W6, D1).
– Lorient have scored in their last 10 Ligue 1 games, only PSG are currently on a better run (24).
– PSG have won all seven of their last Ligue 1 games, the best current run.
– PSG have kept a clean sheet in five of their last seven away games in Ligue 1.
– PSG are the only team to have scored in all 13 of their Ligue 1 games in 2015-16.
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