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Nicollin questions PSG credentials

Montpellier president Louis Nicollin has cast doubt on Paris Saint-Germain’s Ligue 1 title hopes.

Defending champions Montpellier and PSG drew 1-1 last weekend at the Stade de la Mosson, but Nicollin believes his side were the better team at home, claiming Carlo Ancelotti’s men will struggle to top the table come the end of the campaign.

“I do not see them finishing as champions. I would see Lyon finishing first,” Nicollin told L’Equipe.

The 69-year-old was not impressed with the capital city club, and thinks Montpellier would have won had they not seen Younes Belhanda sent off for handball in the second half. PSG had already gone a man down following the sending off of Mamadou Sakho.

“It was a good result. But I do not really like what Belhanda did. If he had not been expelled, we would have taken three points because of the way the game was moving,” he said.

“Okay, Paris had 10 players against our 11, but I’m not sure they would have stayed level. I saw a team that is not so serene.

“(Jeremy) Menez gave me his jersey which made me happy! He is the best PSG player, even if there is horse-tail (Zlatan Ibrahimovic).”

Montpellier, who surprisingly won Ligue 1 last season, sit 14th in the table in 2012/13.

And despite selling some key players, including Olivier Giroud, Nicollin feels the club should be faring much better in their title defence.

“During the summer we kept the same team except for Giroud and (Geoffrey) Dernis, and we recruited four players,” he said.

“So I cannot be satisfied with our start.”

PSG are top of the table on goal difference, with Marseille also on 23 points, while Lyon are just a point back in third place.

Sat 17 Nov, 2012
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