Ligue 1 2011, Week 19 Preview And Fixtures: Paris Saint-Germain Faces Test As Rafa Benitez Watches The Throne

PARIS, FRANCE - DECEMBER 18: Antoine Kambouare (R) of Paris Saint-Germain is seen as Javier Pastore and Jeremy Menez are on field during the Ligue 1 match between Paris Saint-Germain FC and LOSC Lille Metropole on December 18, 2011 in Paris, France. on December 18, 2011 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Rafael Benitez, the villian! He's just sitting, waiting to snatch the job from the protagonist, Antoine Kombouare. Will our hero prevail?!? Find out when PSG play St. Etienne on Wednesday.

After their 0-0 draw with Lille, Paris Saint-Germain are back under scrutiny. More specifically, Antoine Kombouare is under scrutiny. It doesn't get a whole lot easier for his side, as they travel away to St. Etienne during the last set of fixtures before the winter break. If PSG fail to win, Kombouare might not make it to the next fixture. Enter Rafa Benitez, who will ball so hard, the LFP wanna fine him. That ish cray.

AS Nancy vs. Marseille

Tuesday, 3:00 p.m. ET, 9:00 p.m. CET

Nancy actually haven't lost in their last two games. They're so adorable!

Pick: 2-0 Marseille

Auxerre vs. Dijon

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Both of these teams sit just one point ahead of the drop zone in France's crazy relegation race. Nine teams look set to fight it out to avoid two spots all year. Auxerre is solid at home and has a much better goal differential, so throw your money on them, degenerate gamblers!

Pick: 1-0 Auxerre

Evian vs. Montpellier

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Oh, poor Evian.

Pick: 2-0 Montpellier

Lille vs. Nice

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Looking at these teams' relative positions in the table, this result might seem like an obvious one. Don't jump to too many conclusions, though. Nice has a goal differential of just -2 despite their 18th place position. Lille should be able to pick up the three points at home, but Nice are not as bad as their record indicates.

Pick: 1-0 Lille

Lorient vs. Caen

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Basically this is just worth watching for the sweet kits.

Pick: 0-0 draw

Sochaux vs. AC Ajaccio

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Marvin Martin against the worst team in France. There is a deity up in the sky, and he has it out for Memo Ochoa. The good news for them is that Sochaux isn't actually very good, but I have a weird feeling that this one is going to get ugly anyway.

Pick: 3-1 Sochaux

Stade Rennes vs. Bordeaux

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

On talent and standing in the table, these teams are extremely close. On form, they're not very close at all. Bordeaux appears to be finding their stride, while Rennes is struggling a bit. Yann M'Vila and company are in serious need of a home victory. This one smells like a draw, however.

Pick: 1-1 draw

Toulouse vs. Brest

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

Through 18 games, Brest has ELEVEN draws. That's one way to stay up in the top flight! They'll struggle with Toulouse's superb center of midfield in this one, however.

Pick: 1-0 Toulouse

Valenciennes vs. Lyon

Wednesday, 1:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CET

In Ligue 1's current four-way title race, Lyon simply can't afford to drop points in fixtures like this. They will avoid doing so here, but make it much more dramatic than it needs to be. Valenciennes have only lost once and conceded four goals at home this season.

Pick: 2-1 Lyon

St. Etienne vs. Paris Saint-Germain

Wednesday, 3:00 p.m. ET, 9:00 p.m. CET

St. Etienne is fifth in Ligue 1 and has only lost once at home, while many believe that Antoine Kombouare needs a win to save his job. This sounds like the beginning of a really bad sports movie. And isn't Rafa Benitez just the perfect sports movie villain? This is excellent. Kombouare will have his job dramatically saved by a Nene stoppage time winner.

Pick: 1-0 PSG.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.