Stade de Reims vs PSG Preview: Probable Lineups, Prediction and Tactics

PSG will be keen to keep their unbeaten start to the campaign going when they take on Stade de Reims at the Stade Auguste-Delaune II on Saturday.

Reigning French champions Paris Saint-Germain are yet to experience defeat in the 2022/23 campaign and at least domestically, look nigh on unstoppable. They have dropped a mere two points in their first nine games in Ligue 1 and will be keen to keep that run going against Stade de Reims.

Both sides go into the game with contrasting fortunes. Reims are currently 17th in the league and are yet to win at home this season. PSG, on the other hand, have won all five of their away games and will have every reason to approach the next one with confidence.

More so, Christophe Galtier’s side were held to a 1-1 draw midweek away to Benfica. So they will be keen to make use of the lessons learned from the tie and maybe test out some new tactics ahead of the reverse fixture next week.

On paper, PSG go into the clash as the overwhelming favourite. Given their current form, it is difficult to see Reims get anything from the game either. The Red and Whites have had players sent off in six different games this season, and PSG will hope that any of their players don’t pay the price for Reims’ frustrations. The Hard Tackle looks at how both sides could line up on the night and what tactics they might employ.

Team News & Tactics

Stade de Reims

Apart from the poor form, a major weakness in Oscar Garcia’s side is their temperament. Reims have managed to get players sent off in six of their nine Ligue games this season, a poor statistic by any standards.

Junya Ito was the latest culprit, receiving his marching orders against Troyes last weekend. Being down to ten men cost his side dear as a 90th-minute equaliser saw them settle for a 2-2 draw.

While the Japanese attacker will watch on from the sidelines, Reims will welcome back Maxime Busi, Marshall Munetsi and Dion Lopy, who will all have served their bans. Meanwhile, Thomas Foket and Kaj Sierhuis are still recovering from injuries and will also miss out.

For better or worse, Garcia is likely to keep faith in his 3-4-1-2 formation on the night. It should see Yehvann Diouf start in goal behind a back three of Andreaw Gravillon, Emmanuel Agbadou and Yunis Abdelhamid.

Marshall Munetsi and Jens Cajuste will act as the double-pivot in midfield against the duo of Marco Verratti and Vitinha. The duel could more or less help decide the speed at which the match is played. Maxime Busi and Bradley Locko will start as the wing-backs, dropping deep to form a back five when defending. Kamory Doumbia will don the number 10’s role and will feature behind the front two of Alexis Flips and Folarin Balogun.

Paris Saint-Germain
Presnel Kimpembe and Renato Sanches are both out injured and will miss the game. Nuno Mendes will also watch on from the sidelines after picking up an injury midweek against Benfica.

Lionel Messi was also taken off against Benfica due to fatigue and could be given a rest this weekend. With games coming thick and fast until the 2022 FIFA World Cup, PSG cannot afford to burn out their star playmaker.

Christophe Galtier is likely to keep faith in his 3-4-3 formation which has brought PSG much success. Gianluigi Donnarumma will start in goal behind the backline of Danilo Pereira, Marquinhos and Sergio Ramos.

The duo of Marco Verratti and Vitinha will form the base in the middle of the park. Juan Bernat will come in as left wing-back, while Achraf Hakimi will occupy the other flank. With Messi likely rested, Carlos Soler could don the number 10 role of the night.

Kylian Mbappe will start up front alongside Neymar and will pack a punch in the attack. The front three have laid the foundation for the majority of their wins this season, and that could be the case once again on the night.

Probable Lineup (3-4-1-2): Donnarumma; Ramos, Marquinhos, Pereira; Hakimi, Vitinha, Verratti, Bernat; Soler; Neymar, Mbappe

What do you think?

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