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Laurens: Pastore matures for PSG

Ligue 1 15 hours ago
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By ESPN Staff
Sep 20, 2012

St Etienne look to get back on track

St Etienne coach Christophe Galtier is looking for his team to bounce back from last weekend's defeat to Sochaux with a good performance against reigning champions Montpellier.

The Sochaux game was a second home defeat of the season for Galtier's side, who are currently in the top half of the table on goal difference alone.

St Etienne travel to the Stade de la Mosson with champions Montpellier still searching for the form that saw them lift the title for the first time last season, but Galtier knows his players still face a stern test.

"Facing Arsenal [in the Champions League], Montpellier managed a second half of a very high level and deserved at least to equalise," he said. "This demonstrates the quality and commitment of the team - it will be a tough match, engaging and open.

"We must respond in terms of results. But if we keep the same effort and the same behaviour, we often get good results."

Galtier pinpointed the number of missed chances against Sochaux as the main reason behind the defeat, although his side did play the majority of the game with ten men after Jonathan Brison was sent off after only ten minutes.

"I do not consider the defeat as an accident," he said. "With 10 against 11, we played the match we had to do, the players gave everything they had to give, but we stumbled upon a goalkeeper in great form and we were not able to score."

With Montpellier struggling, Marseille lead the table after five wins in their opening five matches. OM are looking for their tenth Ligue 1 title and take on Evian on Sunday hoping to keep their perfect start to the domestic season intact.

Evian are the only side to take a point from Lyon so far this season, and Remi Garde's side will want to keep the pressure on Marseille when they travel to Lille.

Bordeaux, who also remain unbeaten in the league so far, are the other team in action on Sunday, welcoming Ajaccio to the Stade Chaban Delmas.

Lorient have started the new campaign surprisingly well and currently occupy third place in the table. Christian Gourcuff's side finished 17th last season but could move into second place with a victory at home to Nice on Saturday.

Big-spenders Paris St Germain are right on the heels of Lorient after recovering from three successive draws at the start of the season to win their last two games.

They face a trip to last season's Ligue 2 champions Bastia, who have lost their last three league games.

Sochaux, who had not collected a point until last weekend, moved off the foot of the table courtesy of that 1-0 win against St Etienne.

They will be looking to pick up their second victory in as many weeks when they welcome Troyes, the side who replaced them at the foot of the division, to the Stade Auguste Bonal.

Elsewhere, Brest host Valenciennes, Nancy travel to Reims and Toulouse face Rennes.

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