Just two years after winning the French title, Girondins Bordeaux are wading in the depths of the Ligue 1 standings as a high-profile clash with leaders Paris Saint-Germain looms on Sunday.
Bordeaux were crowned champions in 2009 but lost coach Laurent Blanc, striker Marouane Chamakh and influential playmaker Yoann Gourcuff at the end of the following season and the situation has gone from bad to worse ever since.
Last term, coach Jean Tigana threw in the towel in May with captain Alou Diarra leaving to join Olympique Marseille in the close season.
Bordeaux got off to an awful start in this campaign and lie 15th, only two points above safety following only their second win of the season at bottom club AC Ajaccio last weekend.
"I can't do in two months the work that has to be done over a year," coach Francis Gillot (pictured) said last week.
The Ajaccio win, their first in two months, lifted Bordeaux above the danger zone but the side that beat Juventus and Bayern Munich in the Champions League two years ago are still a long, long way from competing with the top teams.
"We are excited to be playing against such a team," defender Matthieu Chalme told the club's website.
"But in the mean time, we dread this game a little bit because we know they are super strong. We don't want to be ridiculous."
PSG, who top the table having won their last six league games, have been impressive this season with France winger Jeremy Menez, Brazilian midfielder Nene, France striker Kevin Gameiro and Argentine playmaker Javier Pastore proving to be a deadly quartet.
On the other hand, Bordeaux have yet to win a game at their Chaban-Delmas stadium, having drawn five and lost one on their own turf.
"We know it's going to be very difficult, but in one game, anything is possible," said Chalme.
Elsewhere, champions Lille will be the only team playing on Saturday when they host promoted Evian Thonon Gaillard.
Recovering Olympique Marseille host Nice on Sunday looking to claim their third league win in a row after snatching a precious point in a 0-0 draw at Arsenal in the Champions League on Tuesday.comments