OUR man in France is Julien Laurens and today he's looking at PSG's trip to St Etienne.
Julien is a London-based sports correspondent for Le Parisien and a veritable French football expert. He writes in French and English for a number of esteemed publications and is a regular on BT Sport as well as contributing to Unibet.
St Etienne v PSG (7.45pm)
The current league leaders, Paris SG, travel to St Etienne on Friday evening to kick off the weekend in Ligue 1. Paris won the League Cup last weekend against Monaco (3-0) easily and will soon win the league back as well. They are untouchable in Ligue 1 at the moment with fifteen wins in a row in all competitions domestically.
They are on an incredible run of results and they don’t fear this trip to St Etienne at all. They have done well there in recent years. Indeed, they have won their last five visits there. Their last defeat in St Etienne was ten years ago.
Apart from Neymar who is still out injured, manager Unai Emery is also without Marco Verratti, Dani Alves and Julian Draxler. However, he will still field a strong team. Kylian Mbappé and Angel Di Maria who were both outstanding in the league cup final last weekend will lead the line up front once more for the Parisians with Edinson Cavani who is also back on the scoresheet now.
But the home side is on a good run itself too. They are unbeaten in their last nine Ligue 1 matches and manager Jean-Louis Gasset has made his team really hard to beat. They are good going forward too with Remi Cabella finding form at the right time. They were very good at Nantes last weekend (3-0) and are now ninth in the table but just four points behind Rennes in fifth.
They will try to not concede against Paris SG before thinking about scoring. Gasset will face his old club as he was assistant manager at Paris under Laurent Blanc. He is hoping he can upset them on Friday. However, Paris SG are in such a strong run of form and didn’t play in Europe either this week so they will be fresh and ready.