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Bordeaux bank on more magic in Atlantic derby

17 January 2009 03:15

PARIS (AFP) - Bordeaux, making waves on the home front, approach this weekend's Atlantic derby at Nantes with only one objective in mind - to prise the league lead from Lyon.

Last Sunday's 4-0 Yoann Gourcuff-inspired drubbing of Paris Saint Germain moved Laurent Blanc's side up to within one point in second place of perennial champions Lyon who cannot afford to slip up at Grenoble.

Bordeaux travel up the coast to Nantes awash with confidence after following up the PSG rout with a win over Chateauroux in midweek to book a League Cup semi-final berth.

Blanc, who made seven changes for that match from the XI that faced PSG, is set to start Marouane Chamakh and Fernando Cavenaghi, the season's joint top scorer with a dozen goals.

Bordeaux are chasing their sixth league title and their first since 1999.

Lyon let two valuable points fall by the wayside last weekend when held to a 1-1 draw at home to Lorient and make the trip to Grenoble missing Sidney Govou.

The curtain came down prematurely on the attacking midfielder's season on Wednesday when he tore his Achilles' tendon in training.

Coach Claude Le Puel has to contend with another injury headache with the torn thigh muscle suffered by defender John Mensah.

Govou meanwhile headed off for ankle surgery with a far from rosy portrayal of life at the Stade Gerland this season.

The 29-year-old attacker told France Football this week that Lyon was suffering from a lack of "dressing room atmosphere."

"(Team) unity either exists or it doesn't. With us it doesn't. Lyon is more a collection of individuals."

He suggested that "perhaps" Lyon commanded less respect than the team had done in the past. We have less physical impact on the opposition, and we aren't so dominant in the game. Let's say we're a little less (dominant) everywhere."

Midfielder Jeremy Toulalan predicted Lyon would come through Saturday's test.

"It's going to be a tricky game....but after all that's gone on this week we're going to put up a big performance." he said.

The surprise packages of the season so far are Rennes who lie third, one point behind Bordeaux, after last weekend's defeat of Grenoble. The high-flyers face a tricky assignment on Sunday at Lille.

Fourth-placed Marseille will be out to keep up the momentum on their pursuit of the top three, hosting bottom side Le Havre with Toulouse, in fifth, at home to Nancy.

PSG put their discouraging performance against Bordeaux behind them with a League Cup quarter-final win over Lens and will be eyeing all three points when they welcome relegation-threatened Sochaux to the Parc des Princes.

Fixtures

Saturday (1800GMT unless stated)

Grenoble v Lyon

Lorient v Valenciennes

Marseille v Le Havre

Nice v Auxerre

Saint Etienne v Le Mans

Toulouse v Nancy

Nantes v Bordeaux (2000)

Sunday (1600GMT unless stated)

Caen v Monaco

Paris Saint Germain v Sochaux

Lille v Rennes (2000)

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Friday 11 July

Thursday 10 July

23:12
21:57
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Wednesday 9 July

23:44
22:43
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21:09
21:01
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20:13
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Ligue 1 table

# Team MP D P
1 0 +0 0
2 0 +0 0
3 0 +0 0
4 0 +0 0
5 0 +0 0
6 0 +0 0
7 0 +0 0
8 0 +0 0
9 0 +0 0
10 0 +0 0
11 0 +0 0
12 0 +0 0
13 0 +0 0
14 0 +0 0
15 0 +0 0
16 0 +0 0
17 0 +0 0
18 0 +0 0
19 0 +0 0
20 0 +0 0

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