Ligue 1 starts this evening with two previous title winners going toe-to-toe

Montpellier

Paris Saint-Germain travel to Montpellier this evening to get the Ligue 1 season under way.

The Ligue 1 season gets under way this evening - and we have a marquee game to start off the campaign.

Paris Saint-Germain take on Montpellier at the Stade de la Mosson in a tie between the two previous Ligue 1 winners.

Of course last season was far from a replica of Montpellier’s shock 2011-12 title triumph - they finished ninth last season after losing several big names and general poor form cost them.

PSG on the other hand romped to Ligue 1 supremacy at the second time of asking since they were taken over by their rich Qatari investors.

So what has changed at both clubs this summer? Well, quite a lot actually.

As while both these teams may be the previous title winners - neither has the coach who led them their at the helm.

PSG saw their boss Carlo Ancelotti switch to Real Madrid while Montpellier’s Rene Girard took over from Rudi Garcia at Lille.

Today will see Laurent Blanc and Jean Fernandez going toe-to toe - with plenty of new faces on show as well.

Montpellier have seen Henri Bedimo, Younes Belhanda and Marco Estrada leave the club this summer. They have however brought in Victor Montano to bag the goals from Stade Rennes and talented players such as Morgan Sanson and Djamel Bakar have also joined the club. Meanwhile Siaka Tiene will be looking forward to this game, after leaving PSG for Montpellier this summer.

PSG have been slightly more extravagant in the market - the arrivals of Edinson Cavani, Lucas Digne and Marquinhos is enough to strike fear into any team’s heart. All three are available for the first game of the season.

PSG won the Trophee des Champions last week - sneaking past Bordeaux with a 2-1 victory. In fact they struggled - scoring their two goals in the last ten minutes.

But there is no doubt that PSG are still the overwhelming favourites to defend their title this season, even with the emergence of AS Monaco as a powerhouse this summer.

With that in mind there should be no contest tonight. Expect Montpellier to fight hard but the class in the team has steadily decreased since they pipped PSG to the title in 2012.

Tonight the opposite trajectories of both teams since then should become clear.

HITC Prediction: Montpellier 1 v 3 Paris Saint-Germain

image: © yvelines

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