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5 things to know about the French League
Question of the Day
PARIS (AP) - Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco have already secured the top two spots in the French league. Third-place Lille and Saint-Etienne will vie for the last Champions League berth in the final round on Saturday. Evian and Sochaux are the only two teams still under the threat of relegation and will meet in a dramatic battle for safety at Stade Bonal.
Here are five things to know about Saturday’s games:
PSG has the opportunity to break the record for most victories in a French league season when it hosts Montpellier. The French champion defeated Lille 3-1 last weekend to equal Reims (1960), Monaco (1961) and Nantes (1966 and 1980) with 26 wins.
The victory over Lille also allowed PSG to set a new record for most points in a season with 86 from 37 games.
PSG coach Laurent Blanc will likely rest some of the players called up for the World Cup in Brazil: Salvatore Sirigu, Lucas Digne, Maxwell, Thiago Silva, Blaise Matuidi, Thiago Motta, Marco Verratti, Yohan Cabaye, Edinson Cavani and Ezequiel Lavezzi.
“We will try to be smart and not take too much risk with too many players,” Blanc told a news conference.
A GREAT SEASON FOR RODRIGUEZ
James Rodriguez has proved instrumental in helping Monaco secure a runner-up finish by scoring nine goals and having 12 assists in his first season in the league.
The young Colombia midfielder only needed a couple of months to adjust to a new league and to the tactical requirements of Monaco coach Claudio Ranieri.
Last weekend, Rodriguez was selected in the French league’s team of the year. He was also among the nominees for the top award in French football, but lost to PSG striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who was voted player of the year by his fellow professionals for the second straight season.
Colombia coach Jose Pekerman included Rodriguez in his 30-man squad for the World Cup.
By Orrin G. Hatch
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