TRAFTON KENNEY - Thursday, March 18, 2010
Carlos Bocanegra and Rennes hope to continue their improved play and make it three wins in a row when they host Toulouse this Saturday.
History favors Rennes at home, with Toulouse last winning at the Stade de la Route de Lorient in 1983. Over the course of 29 matches in Brittany, Toulouse have lost 19, tied eight, and won twice.
The Haute-Garonne-based team have also managed only one win in their last five games, but are coming off an impressive 1-1 tie against Marseille last weekend
Toulouse Coach Alain Casanova is still ruing the continued absence of prolific striker, Andre-Pierre Gignac, who has been sidelined with a torn protractor muscle since early February.
Casanova has had to rely on midfielders like Moussa Sissoko and Paulo Machado in Gignac's absence to take up the scoring mantle.
Their task is all the more difficult against a recently stingy Rennes backline who have recorded two consecutive clean sheets.
Etienne Didot and Jean-Joël Perrier-Doumbé, both of whom formerly donned the red and black of Rennes, are also out injured.
Young striker Franck Tabanou is expected to shake off a knock suffered in training in time for Saturday while Etienne Capoue is also back at Casanova's disposal after returning from suspension.
Rennes Coach Frédéric Antonetti is also forced to shuffle his lineup due to injuries. Attacking midfielder Sylvain Marveaux, who scored the opening goal last weekend in the 2-0 win over Valenciennes, will sit out after tweaking his hip flexor during training.
With Fabien Lemoine struggling with the flu and questionable for Saturday's game, Antonetti will likely turn to the experienced Jerome Leroy in the center of the midfield.
In defense, Bocanegra is expected to earn his fifth consecutive start at left back after a solid outing last weekend.
Rennes are currently tied with Lorient on goal differential and a strong showing Saturday could see them move up to seventh place.