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Jan 15, 2022 at 8pm UK
PSGParis Saint-Germain
Mbappe (32'), Kehrer (53')
Herrera (24'), Mbappe (34'), Kimpembe (55'), Verratti (58'), Pereira (65')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Magnetti (34'), Agoume (45+1'), Chardonnet (61')

Preview: Paris Saint-Germain vs. Brest - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Paris Saint-Germain vs. Brest - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Ligue 1 clash between Paris Saint-Germain and Brest, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Seeking an immediate return to winning ways, runaway Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint-Germain prepare to welcome Brest to the Parc des Princes on Saturday night.

Mauricio Pochettino's men were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw with Lyon last time out, while the visitors slumped to a 3-0 defeat at home to high-flying Nice.

Match preview

Without Brazilian wing king Neymar up to his old tricks on the flanks, it was up to Lyon's Selecao stars to explode the encounter at the Groupama Stadium into life last week, as Bruno Guimaraes and Lucas Paqueta combined for the latter to fire home the opener after just seven minutes.

Peter Bosz's under-performing crop seemed destined to secure a priceless three points against PSG - albeit one hit with multiple absentees - but Pochettino's side restored parity through an unlikely source in out-of-favour defender Thilo Kehrer with 14 minutes remaining.

PSG have certainly developed an affinity for stalemates in Ligue 1 in recent times - drawing four of their last five games in the top flight - but they still boast a healthy 11-point lead over Nice and Marseille in the rankings, although Les Olympiens do have a game in hand.

The 1-1 with Lyon marked PSG's 11th game in a row without defeat in Ligue 1, although their run of draws over the festive period will not please Pochettino, who will certainly stress the message to his depleted crop that his first-ever league title is not in the bag just yet.

However, Les Parisiens enter Saturday's game having taken 25 points from 27 on offer at home this season - scoring at least two goals in all but one of their Parc des Princes encounters - and Brest have their work cut out to march to a famous result at the capital fortress.

Kasper Dolberg sure did provide quite the Danish delight at the Stade Francis Le Ble last Sunday, as the Nice man powered home the opener from outside the area before Brest sought to take advantage of Morgan Schneiderlin's 20th-minute sending off.

However, even a man advantage could not help Michel Der Zakarian's side get one over the title outsiders, as Andy Delort slotted home to double Les Aiglons' lead in the dying embers before Amine Gouiri's stellar solo effort ended all Brest hopes of a comeback.

That 3-0 defeat was a harsh reality check for Les Pirates after they had seen off a youthful Bordeaux outfit 3-0 in the Coupe de France, and they travel to Paris down in 13th in the table, although they are safely nine points clear of the bottom three.

Der Zakarian certainly endeared himself to the Pirates faithful with that memorable six-game winning streak in the autumn, and while Brest have subsequently taken just one point from their last three in the league, a five-game unbeaten run on the road will serve to increase the confidence that an upset could be on the cards.

However, Les Pirates succumbed to a 2-4 defeat to PSG on home soil back in August, which marked their 10th consecutive defeat against the capital side in all competitions, and it has been nearly 37 years since Brest last came up trumps versus Les Parisiens.

Paris Saint-Germain Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • D

Paris Saint-Germain form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D

Brest Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L

Brest form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L

Team News

Lionel Messi was restricted to individual post-COVID recovery before the Lyon clash and is also out this one, but Gianluigi Donnarumma, Julian Draxler, Angel Di Maria, Layvin Kurzawa and Danilo Pereira should all be back.

On a more negative note, Neymar is still injured, Keylor Navas tested positive for COVID-19 on the morning of the game, and Abdou Diallo, Achraf Hakimi and Idrissa Gueye continue their Africa Cup of Nations duty.

Kehrer has certainly put himself into contention for a start over Colin Dagba with his equaliser against Lyon, while Ander Herrera may drop out if Di Maria is fit enough to return on the right.

As for Brest, Der Zakarian only has one AFCON absentee in the form of Haris Belkebla, while Romain Del Castillo and Sebastien Cibois remain sidelined due to groin and Achilles injuries respectively.

Attacking duo Romain Faivre and Irvin Cardona also missed training on Tuesday for unknown reasons, but at this stage there is nothing to suggest that the duo will not make the cut here.

With seven goals and five assists this term, the loss of Faivre would certainly hurt the visitors, and Der Zakarian may be tempted to beef up the defence with the re-introduction of Lilian Brassier.

Paris Saint-Germain possible starting lineup:
Donnarumma; Kehrer, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Mendes; Wijnaldum, Paredes, Verratti; Di Maria, Icardi, Mbappe

Brest possible starting lineup:
Bizot; Pierre-Gabriel, Chardonnet, Herelle, Duverne; Faivre, Lasne, Agoume, Honorat; Mounie, Cardona

We say: Paris Saint-Germain 3-0 Brest

While it remains to be seen which players PSG will be able to welcome back from their COVID-19 cluster, it will surely be too big an ask for Brest to prevent the league leaders from returning to winning ways.

Keeping the back door shut away from home is not one of Brest's strong points - despite their impressive run without defeat on rival turf - but their wait for a first win against PSG since 1985 is sure to continue this weekend.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 2.5:data

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