20 August 2014 17:55
Paris Saint-Germain are expecting a tough test on Friday against a fired-up Evian side who have given them problems in recent times.
Evian will be desperate for an upturn in fortunes against the Ligue 1 champions in Annecyin after a dismal start to the season.
If a 3-0 home defeat to Caen in their season-opener was not bad enough, Evian – who sit bottom of the table – were hammered 6-2 by Rennes on Saturday.
A defence that has conceded nine goals in two league games is sure to have PSG forwards Edinson Cavani and Ezequiel Lavezzi rubbing their hands together.
There will be no Zlatan Ibrahimovic, as the PSG talisman is expected to miss up to six weeks after injuring his rib in their 2-0 win against Bastia on Saturday.
Cavani has been regularly linked with moves away from the French capital in the close-season, but Ibrahimovic’s short-term absence means he is now likely to stay at the club.
Ibrahimovic was not the only player to suffer injury on Saturday, with Thiago Motta having his nose broken by a headbutt from Bastia striker Brandao in the tunnel, while defender Gregory van der Wiel went off with a back problem.
Neither Motta or van der Wiel are expected to feature against Evian, a side who have lost just one of their last four home matches against PSG, while captain Thiago Silva is definitely ruled out with a hamstring injury.
They beat PSG 2-0 in December last year, a result that ended the club’s 36-match unbeaten run in all competitions.
Neither of the scorers on that occasion – Clarck N’Sikulu and Modou Sougou – started for Evian in their loss at Rennes.
PSG defender Lucas Digne is wary of the threat posed by out-of-sorts Evian despite their poor start.
“Last year we lost 2-0. But the match was a bit special because it was played on a frozen pitch,” Digne told PSG TV.
“On Friday it will be another tough game and that’s what we’re expect [expecting].
“We know they will be looking for revenge [after recent losses].
“They will be out to try and push us around, like they have tried to do in recent years. Like every away match, we will be looking to impose our football to win.”