Bastia finished 2014 in good form and started the new year with the right foot. They advanced in the French Cup after eliminating Lille on home ground (won 2-0).
Bastia made a smart game, took the lead early after 2 goals from winger Ayite and afterwards focused entirely on defending. They succeeded in closing down ranks but opponents’ diminished offensive strength also played a big role in the final outcome.
They had a decent organization but against PSG it will be infinitely harder. Bastia’s players are slow and they will have a hard time keeping up with PSG’s fast and short passes.
In comparison to the Cup game, Bastia may miss winger Ayite (the one who scored both goals) and defender Modesto as they are doubtful after suffering injuries.
PSG easily won away at Montpellier in the French Cup (3-0) even if possession was almost evenly split and goal scoring opportunities weren’t abundant.
Upfront PSG successfully converted all their major chances and in defense they didn’t had many problems and rejecting all incoming actions. Things shouldn’t be any different against Bastia since they don’t really have an impressive offensive potential.
PSG will once again miss forwards Cavani and Lavezzi who have been suspended by coach Blanc after arriving late at the club. Most likely keeper Sirigu and midfielder Motta will also sit out again due to injuries.
Due to the limited offensive capabilities Bastia are happy to defend regardless the opponent and regardless the score. Inviting PSG to attack can be suicidal especially when you don’t have the means to keep up with fast paced actions. PSG -1.25 at 1.96
UPDATE: Hosts will have to do without injured midfielders Ayite and Ba and also without Tallo (forward) and Diakite (fullback) on international duty at African Cup of Nations. PSG have only 1 player at the African tournament, fullback Aurier.
Bastia: Areola, J-L.Leca – Cioni, Squillaci, Modesto, Palmieri, Marange, Peybernes – Ab.Keita, Djiku, Romaric, Gillet, Vincent, Cahuzac, Boudebouz – Ongenda, Maboulou, D.Cissé
PSG: Maignan, Douchez – Maxwell, David Luiz, Digne, Marquinhos, Van der Wiel, Thiago Silva, Z.Camara – Pastore, Verratti, Rabiot, Matuidi, Lucas, Cabaye, Kimmakon – Ibrahimovic, Bahebeck