Montpellier must take their
opportunity to win their first Ligue 1 title this season with an
era of Paris Saint-Germain domination looming, their president said
Rene Girard's side have 76 points with two games left and
will be crowned champions if they get a better result at home to
Lille on Sunday than second-placed Paris Saint-Germain (73) do
against Stade Rennes.
Defeat at their Stade de la Mosson would make for a
nail-biting finale as defending champions Lille, who are third
on 71 points, could narrow the gap to two points.
"It had better be this year because then it is going to be
PSG all over the place for seven years, there's no way we'll
avoid this," Montpellier president Louis Nicollin, one of the
most colourful characters in French football, told reporters.
"I'm so stressed out. We could be eighth, comfortable,
having secured our place in the top flight.
"It's stressful because we need to avoid third place and
that annoying Champions League play-off. So second would be
great. But first...," he added.
Montpellier suffered a bout of nerves two weeks ago when
Younes Belhanda hit out at team mate Olivier Giroud for not
taking a decisive stoppage-time penalty resulting in Souleymane
Camara missing the spot-kick in a 2-2 draw against Evian Thonon
Montpellier, however, bounced back on Monday with a
comprehensive 2-0 win at fifth-placed Stade Rennes, with Camara
and Remy Cabella, who deputised for the suspended Belhanda,
scoring both goals.
"We are warriors, real warriors," said midfielder Benjamin
"[On Sunday] La Mosson will be boiling. They'd better be
Lille captain Rio Mavuba believes both Montpellier and PSG
could crumble under pressure.
"They have been both fighting for top spot for a long time
but they could feel the pressure seeing they may end up in third
place afterall," Mavuba told his club's website.
With seven teams within four points, the battle for survival
will heat up on Sunday.
Bottom club AJ Auxerre, who are on 34 points and have been
in the top flight since 1980, will be relegated if they lose and
both AC Ajaccio and Sochaux win, respectively against Olympique
Lyon and at Caen.
Four clubs, Rennes, Saint-Etienne, Girondins Bordeaux and
Toulouse, will be out to secure fifth place, which would send
them into next season's Europa League.
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