Preview: Metz v. Paris

Ahead of Les Parisiens' trip to Metz on Matchday 34 of Ligue 1 on Sunday 19 May at 21:00, we dive into the club from the capital's next encounter. From the league table to team dynamics and players to watch, here's an overview of the match that awaits our Rouge et Bleu against FCM.


After being held by Le Havre (3-3) and losing to Toulouse (1-3), Paris rediscovered the taste of victory on Wednesday in Nice (1-2). This Sunday, Paris Saint-Germain are on the road again, this time traveling to the Moselle to face FC Metz for the final day of Ligue 1. In the league, the club from the capital's record stands at 21 wins, 10 draws, and 2 losses, totalling 73 points, securing their 12th French Championship title for the Rouge et Bleu.

For FC Metz, the situation is much more precarious. Currently 16th with 29 points, Metz is almost certain to finish in this position, which means they will have to play a relegation play-off to remain in the top flight. Recently, the Grenats achieved two crucial victories against Lens (2-1) and Le Havre (0-1) before suffering three consecutive defeats against Lille (1-2), Rennes (2-3) and Strasbourg (2-1). To ensure that Lorient do not catch them, Metz will need to put in a strong performance against Les Parisiens.


On Sunday evening, Les Parisiens will aim for their 14th consecutive victory against Metz in the top flight. More importantly, if they avoid defeat, they could become the first team in history to remain unbeaten away from home throughout an entire Ligue 1 season, as Paris are unbeaten in their last 23 away matches in France, the best streak in the club's history. Additionally, the club from the capital could also become the first team in the five major European leagues not to have trailed for a single minute away from home during an entire season in the 21st century.

On their side, Metz have scored in each of their last 11 Ligue 1 matches, marking their best streak in the 21st century. Often, matches involving the Grenats are lively, as they are currently on a streak of 11 home games in the top tier without a draw (3 wins, 8 losses), the longest current series in the league. Therefore, there should be a winner at Stade Saint-Symphorien, where Les Parisiens will need to keep a close eye on Georges Mikautadze, who has scored in each of the last six Ligue 1 matches he has played.


László Bölöni and his team primarily set-up in a 4-3-3 formation. In goal, Algerian international Alexandre Oukidja (with a 69.3% save success rate this season in Ligue 1) is the established first-choice goalkeeper. In front of him, the highly experienced Ismaël Traoré is expected to start alongside either Christophe Hérelle or the promising 19-year-old Sadibou Sané. On the right side of the defence, Maxime Colin remains uncertain but will start if deemed fit. On the opposite side, captain Matthieu Udol (3 goals and 3 assists in Ligue 1 this season) is expected to return, being preferred over Fali Candé, who can also play through the middle.

In midfield, former Monaco player Kévin N'Doram is indispensable in the holding role. He is expected to be joined by one of the season's revelations for Metz: Senegalese international Lamine Camara (1 goal, 4 assists). The final midfield spot is more uncertain, with Arthur Atta and Danley Jean Jacques in close contention. In attack, Algerian international Kevin Van Den Kerkhof (1 goal, 2 assists) might be preferred over Ablie Jallow (3 goals, 2 assists) due to his stronger defensive capabilities.

On the left flank, rising star Papa Amadou Diallo (2 goals, 1 assist) is expected to start the match, provided the young Senegalese winger is fit. If not, Cameroonian international Didier Lamkel Zé, who joined this winter from the Süper Lig, is expected to take his place. Finally, leading the attack will be Georges Mikautadze (13 goals, 4 assists), who will aim to disrupt the Parisian defence and guide his team to a strong performance.