5 things to know about Ligue 1 this weekend

Published on NewsOK Modified: April 17, 2014 at 7:34 am •  Published: April 17, 2014
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With defending champion and Ligue 1 leader Paris Saint-Germain not playing until Wednesday, Monaco can cut the gap to seven points with a victory at home to Nice.

At the other end of the table, bottom club Ajaccio visits Bastia in the Corsican derby knowing it could be relegated if other results don't go its way.

Here are five things to know about this weekend's matches:

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PSG LOOKING TO AVOID HAT TRICK

Paris Saint-Germain will have to recover swiftly from its surprise 1-0 defeat at Lyon as it heads into one of its most critical weeks of the season.

Last weekend's defeat was only its second in the league and the first time PSG has lost back-to-back matches this campaign — following defeat at Chelsea the previous Tuesday.

Coach Laurent Blanc has come under fire as PSG prepares to face Lyon again in the League Cup final on Sunday before hosting relegation-threatened Evian on Wednesday.

"It's normal that people question the coach's position after these type of defeats," PSG midfielder Marco Verratti said. "But if a goal had been scored at Chelsea in the 94th minute, we would have been phenomenons. That's football.

"When you lose, it's always the coach that's targeted. But that's not the case. Everyone is responsible."

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RANIERI HITS OUT

Monaco also has to recover from a surprise defeat as it looks to close the gap on leader Paris Saint-Germain to seven points when it hosts near-neighbors Nice on Sunday.

Coach Claudio Ranieri slammed his players after Monaco was eliminated from the French Cup on Wednesday, losing 3-1 at Guingamp.

"It's a huge disappointment," Ranieri said. "We have 69 points, we're fighting to get in the Champions League and Guingamp is fighting to stay in Ligue 1, but I thought Guingamp was Monaco in the match. They played very well, congratulations.

"I'm not embarrassed. The team is always an expression of its coach's character. I can lose but I fight, I give everything. And only one team did that. Congratulations to Guingamp, who deserved to win 4-0."

Nice is without a win in its past four matches.



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