Angers v PSG, Friday 7.45pm
PSG travel to Angers on Friday evening and will try to put pressure on Monaco by getting three points which would bring the Parisians level with the leaders who only play on Saturday evening.
Since the title race has heated up in the past few weeks, PSG have usually played after Monaco, so this is a good opportunity for the current champions. However, they have a tough away game at Angers who are in good form after having qualified for the French Cup semi-final and are currently 12th in the table and will stay up again for sure, which is a great achievement for the club.
But this game is hugely important for Paris. They are without Thiago Silva, Layvin Kurzawa and Julian Draxler who are all injured, while Hatem Ben Arfa is ill and also missing. On the other hand, Marquinhos and Thiago Motta are back in the squad and will start, like Javier Pastore in midfield behind Edison Cavani.
Paris are full of confidence as they are unbeaten in the league in 2017 and have won their last six away games in the league. A seventh win in a row would equal the club’s record. PSG haven’t lost at Angers since 1975 when Unai Emery was only three! However, they know it will be tough as they saw last season when they only managed a 0-0 draw. They cannot afford not to win on Friday though.
For Angers, this is the most prestigious game of the season and the players and the fans are really up for it. They played well against Monaco in their last home match (1-0 defeat) last weekend and were unlucky to lose. This time, they want to do the same performance, being aggressive, well organised and work hard and get a win. Angers will field a strong team especially in midfield with Mangani, Sanataria and Ndoye who have been very good this season. However, I think PSG will still manage to snatch a narrow win like Monaco did last weekend.
The odds are massively in favour of PSG with an away win at 1.30. The draw is at 5.50 and a Angers home win is at 10.00.
Edinson Cavani is favourite to score first at 3.15. My best tip is under 1.5 goals to be scored at 4.50.
Score prediction: Angers 0 PSG 1 (7.50)
Monaco v Dijon, Saturday 8pm
Only three days before their victory away at Dortmund in the Champions League quarter-finals first leg, Monaco host Dijon at the Stade louis II on Saturday evening. The game was initially planned in the afternoon but because Monaco only played on Wednesday instead of Tuesday because of an attack on the Dortmund team bus, the league moved the kick off time for this back.
Monaco are still leading the Ligue 1 table, three points clear of PSG before this weekend. L’ASM is still in three competitions this season and the games are coming thick and fast. The manager will rotate his squad a lot. Djibril Sidibé is still out injured while Benjamin Mendy should be fit and able to start after missing the Dortmund game. On the other hand, Tiemoué Bakayoko, who was suspended in Europe, is back and will start in midfield. Valère Germain should start up front too as Falcao and even Kylian Mbappé could be rested.
Monaco have put behind them the heavy defeat against PSG in the League Cup final three weeks ago and are back on track like they showed in Dortmund. They were great going forward in that match but in the league this season, they have also managed to win when not playing well. They will fight hard again on Saturday, especially if things are getting tough and legs are tired.
Dijon know this is a great opportunity for them to play Monaco. Indeed, the home side will have their minds on the Champions League second leg against Dortmund next week and some key players will be rested this weekend. So Dijon will want to capitalise on that and they desperately need points too.
They are currently second from bottom after a bad run of results. But they can still stay up. In the reverse fixture at home, they managed to get a point this season so they will be confident they can frustrate the Monaco attack. They have won only once on the road this season so it is also a tough call for them. I think that despite the changes and the tired legs, Monaco will win comfortably at home on Saturday.
The odds are massively in favour of Monaco with a home win at 1.25. The draw is at 6.50 and a Dijon away win is at 10.00.
Kylian Mbappé is favourite to score first at 3.60. My best tip is Monaco to win both halves at 2.40.
Score prediction: Monaco 2 Dijon 0 (9.00)
Nice v Nancy, Saturday 4pm
Nice, who host Nancy at the Allianz Riviera on Saturday afternoon, are not getting away and are still putting pressure on the leaders Monaco by keeping winning. They are still 3rd in the table, four points behind Monaco and one behind PSG but with a game in hand.
They have pretty much secured third place now which is a great achievement and will take them into the Champions League qualifiers in the summer and hopefully further as well. But their aim is to keep the pressure on Monaco and PSG.
Nice have been excellent at home this season and are unbeaten in their stadium in the league with 12 wins and four draws. Mario Balotelli has scored 11 of his 13 league goals at home too. The Italian was fantastic last weekend at Lille where his brace gave Nice the win.
His attitude was brilliant too but he is suspended for this match which is a huge blow for Nice. Mickael Le Bihan should replace him up front ahead of Donis. Nice are also still without Alassane Plea and Wylan Cyprien, injured and out until the end of the season. It is a huge blow but, for now, Nice are coping well without them. They also have a great home record against Nancy with just one defeat since 1982.
However, this game is huge for Nancy, who finally won last weekend against Rennes (3-0) after eight defeats and one draw in their last nine matches! They are 17th in the table but just two points clear of the bottom two and level with Lorient in 18th. They desperately need points and last weekend’s win was a big boost but they need to go on a good winning streak to stay up. However, Nice will be too strong for them on Saturday but without Balotelli, Cyprien and Plea, I can only see them getting a narrow win.
The odds are massively in favour of Nice with a home win at 1.65. A draw is at 3.65 and a Nancy away win is at 5.80.
Anastosios Donis is favourite to score first at 5.50. My best tip is Nice to win without conceding a goal at 2.43.
Score prediction: Nice 1 Dijon 0 (6.00)