Hexagoal Ligue 1 Trophy

Dijon dig out of trouble to continue at PSG?

Publish on 16/05/2019 at 00:00 - S. WILLIS


Paris Saint-Germain will be presented with the Hexagoal trophy after Saturday's home game against a Dijon side that really need the points as they continue their relegation fight.

Paris Saint-Germain - Dijon FCO 

Dijon boss Antoine Kombouaré was infamously sacked by PSG with the capital club top of the table at Christmas in 2011 - PSG ended up second under Carlo Ancelotti - but Saturday for the Burgundy club is all about building on the momentum of the vital 2-1 victory over Strasbourg in Week 36.

South Korean star Kwon Chang-hoon scored in the final minute against Coupe de la Ligue winners Strasbourg to enhance Dijon's prospects of playing themselves out of trouble. Dijon entered Week 37 19th in the table, two points behind Caen in 18th and Monaco in 17th.

Kombouaré: "This is the victory that gave us hope"

After the success against Strasbourg, Kombouaré said: "This is the victory that gives us hope. I don't know if it was deserved but it doesn't matter. We're not going to worry about Caen or Monaco and we're going to focus on ourselves. We suffered in the second half even though we were lucky enough to have scored the opening goal. I liked the reaction of the players, their mental strength, as we scored right at the end of added time. I am also happy for Julio Tavares, who was back on the scoresheet."

The club's record goalscorer Tavares had gone 31 Ligue 1 Conforama matches without a goal before notching against Strasbourg and the burly Cape Verde international forward will again need to be at his best at the Parc des Princes on Saturday if Dijon are to take advantage of PSG's lengthy suspension and injury list.

Glut of PSG suspensions

Centre-halves Marquinhos and Presnel Kimpembe are suspended, while club captain Thiago Silva is injured. Moreover, Thomas Tuchel also has Brazilian superstar Neymar, left-back Juan Bernat and Italian midfielder Marco Verratti on the banned list. On the upside for PSG's German boss, Kylian Mbappé - the top scorer in the division with 30 goals - is available again after completing his three-match ban.

PSG are bidding to complete an unbeaten home league season for the fifth time in 46 seasons. Victory against Dijon would be Tuchel's side's 17th home win of the season and overall the capital club are still in with a chance of equalling the most victories of any club in a league season. To reach the mark of 30 achieved by PSG in 2015-2016 and Monaco in 2016-2017 PSG will have to beat Dijon and follow that up with another three points at Reims on the final day.

PSG's 2-1 win at Angers, inspired by Neymar on his farewell appearance for the season, was much-needed as it was only the club's second league success in their last seven outings.  Tuchel acknowledged: "It has been a difficult run and we managed to get a win that will help us get our confidence and team spirit back. It was absolutely necessary to show a reaction and it was our last chance to do it. We expect Neymar to be decisive, to score goals and set them up. That's his job, that's his talent."

Probable Teams:

Paris Saint-Germain: Areola; Meunier, Mbe Soh, Kehrer, Kurzawa; Dani Alves, Paredes, Draxler, Di Maria; Cavani, Mbappé

Dijon: Runarsson; Alphonse, Yambéré, Lautoa, Haddadi; Marié, Balmont, Amalfitano; Kwon, Tavares, Sliti