PSG VS RC Lens LIVE Football Score 01/01/2023
RC Lens host Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday in a clash between the top two in Ligue 1. It will be first against second facing off due to Lens’ four-point advantage over Olympique de Marseille entering the week, while PSG’s late win over RC Strasbourg Alsace on Wednesday opened up a provisional eight-point lead. Neymar was sent off in that 2-1 success at Parc des Princes and will miss the trip north for this showdown which Lens enter seven points behind PSG after their 0-0 draw with OGC Nice on Thursday. “It is a great game to kick-off 2023 with a great atmosphere,” said Parisien boss Christophe Galtier of the game. “It will be a full-blooded affair. We will keep up our good away form — Lens are very good at home. They concede few goals and get better season after season. My players know how important this one is.”
Lens: Haise i assessing his troops after the Nice draw, but Wuilker Farinez is a long-term casualty and is unlikely to play this season. Jimmy Cabot is also out for a lengthy period of time and might not return in time for the end of this campaign. Adam Buksa remains out and David Pereira Da Costa has injured his shoulder, but Alexis Claude Maurice should be available again after missing the OGCN clash due to a clause in his loan contract inserted by his parent club. Joker signing Julien Le Cardinal was in the group to face Nice and should be in line for his home debut here. Facundo Medina also picked up a knock in that goalless draw.
PSG: Neymar will now miss out through suspension so he joins Presnel Kimpembe, Nuno Mendes, Renato Sanches, and Timothee Pembele is missing out on this one. Lionel Messi is expected back in the first few days of January after Argentina’s FIFA World Cup win, but not in time to feature in this one. Kylian Mbappe will be well and truly the main man for Christophe Galtier’s side here after his late penalty heroics against Strasbourg. On Friday night those five dreaded words raised their heads in east London again. Too good to go down: it is the knell of doom around West Ham, a cruel reminder of the brutal season 20 years ago when Jermain Defoe, Michael Carrick, Paolo Di Canio and 42 points were not enough to keep the club from the Premier League trap door.
That side is widely acknowledged to be among the most purely talented teams to ever find themselves in the bottom three come the end of the season, a side that sleepwalked into a crisis that they only came to fully understand when it was too late. And so it is doubtless a little concerning for West Ham fans to hear their manager accentuate the positives after a fifth straight defeat in the Premier League, a 2-0 loss against Brentford that had the Irons just a point above the relegation zone having played a game more than those around them on Friday night. It is becoming a familiar story. They may not have been remotely as dominant against Arsenal on Boxing Day but for 45 minutes they executed their gameplan rather effectively: punching through the Gunners’ weak point down the left flank to win a penalty and then protecting their penalty box with numbers and discipline. Then, just like the two throw-ins that undid them on Friday night, they were undone by atypical errors from a Moyes team, so often defined by their ability to nail down the basics in defense.
That is rather the challenge for the Scot, that supporters have come to expect far more from him over the last few years, where West Ham have been competing with the Premier League’s most established powers in the European places. In the early months of the year his side had turned the anodyne enormodome that is the London Stadium into the capital’s most thrilling and energetic venue; as the ground bid farewell to 2022 most had long since made for the exits. Those that stayed around did so to boo.
“Franck is a very good coach and a very smart tactician,” added Galtier of opposite number Franck Haise. “As a man, he is a very good person which counts for a lot in my eyes. He has made Lens very solid in the changes he has brought to the club — they are a big club once again in Ligue 1. They have every right to believe, to hope, and to dream of an extraordinary season. Based on their points and quality of performances, Lens are the best team that we will face this opening half of the season.” Christophe Galtier’s charges are the only unbeaten side in Europe’s top five leagues this season and are currently at the top of the Ligue 1 standings. They hold a seven-point lead over second-placed Lens and can extend it further by securing all three points on the night.
Franck Haise’s men are no pushovers and have fearlessly faced any challenge thrown at them this season. A mean defence that has let in just ten goals forms the foundation for the home side’s success this season. Paris Saint-Germain have netted 45 goals this season, the most of any side in Ligue 1. It is fair to say that Lens will face their litmus test at the back on New Years’ day. Lens have not lost to PSG at home since securing promotion back to the French top flight in 2020/21. They are just one of three sides to do so during that period and have every reason to believe they can cause an upset on the night. Not many teams can outdo PSG domestically, and the fact that Lens are the only side to have a 100 per cent win rate at home in the league this season speaks volumes about their ability.
PSG arrive as heavy favourites but had to rely on a stoppage-time penalty from Kylian Mbappe to secure a win against Strasbourg earlier this week. The French superstar will once again be relied upon in the absence of Neymar and Lionel Messi. Les Sand et Or have come a long way in the last few years. Lens were floundering in the second division in 2019/20. But just three years later, they have emerged as the biggest threat to PSG’s death grip on the Ligue 1 title.
Backed up by a resolute rearguard, Franck Haise’s men have rallied together and currently sit pretty in the second spot in the league. Another win will see them not just snap PSG’s unbeaten run this season but also close the gap to the top to four points. Lens are the only side with a 100 per cent home record in Ligue 1 this season, and with home support to boot, that record could very well stay intact come the full-time whistle. PSG also have several stars unavailable, meaning the home side could make the most of the opportunity.
Haise will be without several players on the night and will have decisions to make. Jimmy Cabot and Wuilker Farinez have both injured their ACLs and are long-term absentees. David da Costa is out with a shoulder injury, while Adam Buksa is nursing a knock on the ankle. Given the absentees, Lens are likely to deploy in a 3-4-3 formation that will be intended to win the midfield battle. PSG’s central midfield plays a big role in their buildup, and keeping Marco Verratti and co. under wraps can help the home side seize the initiative.
Brice Samba should start in goal behind the back three of Jonathan Gradit, Kevin Danso and Facundo Medina. Przemyslaw Frankowski and Deiver Machado are likely to start at full-back with the duo of Salis Abdul Samed and Seko Fofana holding the fort in the middle of the park. The attack is likely to be spearheaded by Lois Openda, with Florian Sotoca, and Wesley Said backing him up on the outside. With Presnel Kimpembe unavailable and Marquinhos suffering from a dip in form, Lens could seize the initiative by taking the game to their opponents.