Ligue 1 Preview: PSG aim to shake off Champions League blues, Ajaccio face drop
By Football News
Coupe de la Ligue finalists Lyon and Paris Saint-Germain clash in Ligue 1 as the leaders aim to shake off their UEFA Champions League exit.
PSG were knocked out of Europe in heart-breaking fashion on Tuesday, suffering a 2-0 quarter-final second-leg defeat to Chelsea, who went through on away goals after levelling the tie at 3-3 late on at Stamford Bridge.
That loss ended hopes of a quadruple for Laurent Blanc's side, who have already won the Trophee des Champions this season and are in pole position to claim a second straight Ligue 1 title.
The capital club travel to the Stade de Gerland - the scene of last season's title triumph - 13 points above second-placed Monaco, and will be keen to gain a psychological edge over Lyon on Sunday ahead of the Coupe de la Ligue showpiece at the Stade de France the following Saturday.
Meanwhile, Monaco can cement their grip on second spot with a win over mid-table Rennes in a clash that could prove to be a rehearsal of the Coupe de France final.
Rennes meet Ligue 2 Angers in next Wednesday's semi-final, while Monaco are favoured to overcome Guingamp and reach the showpiece.
But the principality club's immediate focus will be on holding off third-placed Lille, who are just six points behind Claudio Ranieri's men with as many games to go.
Lille host neighbours Valenciennes in a game that will have implications at both ends of the table with the visitors six points adrift of safety after three games without a win.
Second-bottom Sochaux host Toulouse hoping to further their prospects of survival, while Evian and Guingamp will be eyeing victories to pull away from the bottom three.
Evian welcome Bastia to Annecy with Pascal Dupraz's side seeking to make it four games unbeaten.
By contrast, Guingamp have gradually tumbled down the table due to a run of only four wins in 21 league games and now face an important Brittany derby at Nantes, who still cannot be ruled out of the relegation picture.
Meanwhile, bottom club Ajaccio will definitely be relegated if they lose to Bordeaux, but at the other end Saint-Etienne travel to Reims as Christophe Galtier's men try to keep pace with Lille in the race for the final Champions League place.
Elsewhere, Montpellier can all but secure safety with a win over a Marseille side with little to play for, and Lorient visit Nice.