sport

Ligue 1 weekend preview

Paris Saint-Germain are fully focused on extending their lead at the top of the Ligue 1 table after all but securing their place in the Champions League quarter-finals this week.

The French champions look set to make the last eight of Europe's elite competition after claiming an emphatic 4-0 victory at Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday.

There are, however, no guarantees that the Germans will not pull off a sensational comeback in Paris, just as there are no guarantees that Laurent Blanc's men will retain the Ligue 1 title with relative ease.

Second-placed Monaco can narrow their advantage to just two points should they beat Reims on Friday night and PSG defender Maxwell knows his side would do themselves a serious disservice by losing focus in Toulouse.

He told his club's official website: "The matches before or after a Champions League game are always difficult.

"In the league, we must pick up three more important points in the title race.

"Everyone is one hundred per cent, or even more, focused against us.

"We must therefore remain highly concentrated and stay in great shape to give our maximum."

The game at the Stade Municipal comes two days after Monaco host Reims in what home coach Claudio Ranieri jokingly described as a 'Champagne' fixture.

The team from that region have already beaten Monaco this season while putting them out of the Coupe de la Ligue.

Ranieri said: "They are a 'Champagne' team and we have already played them twice without beating them.

"So now we must take them very seriously and finally do so."

Lille welcome Lyon to the Stade Pierre-Mauroy with a view to strengthening their wavering grip on third place.

Les Dogues have won only one game from their last seven while Lyon are in sixth and riding a run of five wins from six games.

St Etienne will look to capitalise on any slip-up from Lille to move closer to the last Champions League place with a positive result at mid-table Bastia.

Marseille are also in the mix for Europe and host Lorient on the south coast with next week's 'Le Classique' meeting with PSG in the capital at the back of their minds.

There is a relegation six-pointer between 18th-placed Valenciennes and 19th-placed Sochaux at the Stade du Hainaut.

Despite their current predicament, VA are unbeaten at home since early December, while Sochaux have taken only two points from the road this season.

Bottom of the pile are luckless Ajaccio, who visit Montpellier.

The Corsicans lost 3-0 on their last two league visits to the Stade de la Mosson and currently lie a worrying 10 points from safety.

Elsewhere, Bordeaux look to make amends for a dismal start to 2014 which has seen them lose four from five games when they entertain Evian, and 16th-place Guingamp welcome 13th-placed Nice to Brittany.