Friday, September 18, 2020

Prediction: PSG vs Metz

Verdict: Total goals over 2.5

Best odds: 1/2

Bookmaker: Betfair

Paris Saint-Germain are set to welcome Metz to the Parc des Princes on Thursday, in a game that was postponed from the opening round of the 2020/21 season in Ligue 1.

Funnily enough, these two teams currently find themselves in the same region of the table – near the bottom.

Paris Saint-Germain

The defending champions, who sat 12 points above the closest rivals when 2019/20 was curtailed early due the Covid-19 outbreak, are going through a notable crisis at the moment. Everything seemed perfectly fine as they worked their way towards the Champions League final, which they ended up losing to Bayern Munich. A lot of their players went on the international break which preceded the club season kick-off, and that is where things started going downhill.

Several of their players, including forward Kylian Mbappe, were tested positive to Covid-19. Then they were beaten in what was the actual Ligue 1 season opener for them by Lens, but the thing that will have hurt them the most was the defeat at home to fierce rivals Olympique Marseille on Sunday. The only goal of the game was scored in the 57th minute by Marseille’s Florian Thauvin, but at the very end, a tussle broke out between the two sets of players, with Layvin Kurzawa, Leandro Paredes and Neymar all sent off for PSG, together with Jordan Amavi and Dario Benedetto of Marseille.

PSG now find themselves in the lowly 18th place without a single point, though they will probably rise through the table soon enough.

Team News

Naturally, Kurzawa, Paredes and Neymar are all suspended and won’t be taking part in the Metz clash. On the other hand, head coach Thomas Tuchel will be hoping to be in the position to call upon the players which were put in self-isolation – Mbappe, fellow forward Mauro Icardi, midfielder Marquinhos and goalkeeper Keylor Navas.

In the absence of Neymar and Paredes, Julian Draxler should be given a start, either on an attacking flank or in the middle of the park.

Metz

Meanwhile, Metz’s luck in the league so far hasn’t been much better than that of PSG, at least not in terms of results. Like the champions, they have no points as they lost both of the two opening games, first at home to AS Monaco, and then away to Lille OSC, and both by conceding one goal while failing to score any.

Last time around, they escaped relegation from the top tier rather comfortably, sitting in 15th place after 28 rounds with 34 points, 11 more than Amiens in 19th who went down. Their aim this time will likely be to repeat the feat, albeit over a full course of the season.

Vincent Hognon’s team will be going into this match without any pressure on their backs – there is no shame in losing to the reigning champions and they can only pull a positive surprise. They will also be heartened by the thought of facing Reims next, who have already played three times and only managed to earn a point.

Team News

Defender Manuel Cabit was involved in a nasty car accident last year in November, and he’s still recovering from it. Midfielder Kevin N’Doram is out with an Achilles problem.

Hognon is likely to name an unchanged starting XI from the previous match, though forward Habib Diallo, who came off the bench in that one, could be given a start this time.

Conclusion

PSG now have a point to prove and they will surely charge towards the visitors’ goal from the first whistle. Even without Neymar (and Mbappe and Icardi if they aren’t ready in time), they still have enough quality to win this match. Much will probably depend on whether Angel Di Maria is capable of taking matters into his own hands and recreating the form he showed towards the end of the Champions League campaign.

Although neither of these teams has been involved in a match which saw more than one goal, it feels they could buck the trend now, with the home team the clear favourites.

Verdict: Total goals over 2.5

Best odds: 1/2

Bookmaker: Betfair

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Veselin Trajkovic


Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on four different football blogs.

SHARE OR COMMENT ON THIS ARTICLE

WE RECOMMEND

Leave a Reply

avatar
 
smilegrinwinkmrgreenneutraltwistedarrowshockunamusedcooleviloopsrazzrollcryeeklolmadsadexclamationquestionideahmmbegwhewchucklesillyenvyshutmouth
  Subscribe  
Notify of
More More
Top