Ligue 1

Lyon v Paris Saint-Germain: Motta confident of quadruple chances

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Midfielder Thiago Motta says Paris Saint-Germain are hoping to continue their march towards a second consecutive domestic quadruple when they visit Lyon in Ligue 1 on Sunday.

The meeting will be the fifth between the two sides this season, with PSG having won all four of the other clashes, including a 5-1 league win and three Cup victories which put paid to the hopes of Bruno Genesio’s side in the Coupe de la Ligue, Coupe de France and Trophee des Champions.

PSG could even go on to win five trophies this season, with their 2-1 win over Chelsea in the Champions round-of-16 first leg ensuring they remain on track in Europe.

Laurent Blanc’s team followed that up with a 4-1 victory over Reims. They have now won 23 and drawn four of their 27 league matches this season as they sit 24 points ahead of second-placed Monaco, moving a step closer to a remarkable unbeaten campaign.

“Lyon are a good side,” Motta told the club’s official website. “We have played four times against them this season, but every match is different.

“They need the points and will do everything to win in front of their fans. We will be heading there to play our football and win.

“I think it [another quadruple] is possible if we stay focused on each individual match. Next week we have a huge match against Saint-Etienne [in the Coupe de France] and we will do what we can to continue our run to defend our title.”

Angel Di Maria and Marco Verratti came off with injuries in the win over Reims on Saturday, but Blanc played down the seriousness of the issues after the match, while Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s two goals in the game took his stunning run of form to 13 goals in his last 10 Ligue 1 appearances.

Lyon, meanwhile, are fifth in the standings. The hosts are still in with a chance of finishing in the top three and sealing Champions League qualification as they just sit two points adrift of Nice and Saint-Etienne immediately above them.

Last week’s 1-0 loss at Lille was a major blow, though, with a three-match winning streak in the league coming to an end, while Christophe Jallet and Clement Grenier were shown red cards in the second half, meaning they are suspended for the PSG clash.

Despite their misery against PSG this season, the history books do offer some hope to Lyon. The hosts have only lost twice in their last 21 home Ligue 1 encounters against the champions.

Genesio’s side, who finished second in 2014-15, have also impressed at home this season, winning seven of their last 10 league contests in front of their own fans and they are yet to be beaten at their new stadium, Parc Olympique Lyonnais.


Key Opta stats:

- Paris Saint-Germain have won each of their last four competitive games against Lyon, their joint-best run against this opponent.
- Lyon are unbeaten in their last five home encounters with the title holders in Ligue 1 (W4, D1).
- PSG are unbeaten in their last 18 away Ligue 1 games (W16, D2), the longest active run in the competition.
- PSG are yet to concede more than one goal in each of their last 22 Ligue 1 games, their second best run after June 1993-February 1994 (25).
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored five goals in his last four Ligue 1 games against Lyon.

- Laurent Blanc has lost four Ligue 1 games against Lyon as a manager, more than against any other opponent.

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