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French Ligue 1 Preview

Ligue 1 resumes, with Nice leading the way at the summit, 3 points clear of PSG and Monaco.
Ligue 1 resumes, with Nice leading the way at the summit, 3 points clear of PSG and Monaco.
Last week proved to be a bit of a poor return for yours truly, with only three out of my 10 tips arriving. My blushes and my pocket for that matter, were spared somewhat by a 57/10 Metz victory that kept me in the black. Anyway, enough dwelling in the past, let’s move onto this week’s action. We have quite an enthralling set of fixtures in store this gameweek, the highlight of which sees Lyon host defending champions Paris Saint-Germain.

Friday 25 November

27/20 Rennes | Draw 43/20 | Toulouse 43/20 (21:45)

Gameweek 14 gets underway with a clash between two sides who failed to claim three-point hauls, last week. The hosts were held to a 1-1 draw by Angers while the visitors went down 2-1 to Metz in the upset of gameweek 13. There is not much to choose between the two sides as they both occupy positions just inside the top 10 and have almost identical win/loss records. As such, I reckon a look at the recent head to head statistics will be the best indicator for determining the outcome of this one. Toulouse have been the dominant force when these two have gone toe to toe with Le Tef winning four out of the last five games. Three of these victories have come away from home and I think they will extend that record to four this Friday. Get on the Toulouse win at a healthy 43/20!

Saturday 26 November

15/20 Monaco | 26/10 | Marseille 7/2 (18:10)

Saturday gets underway with a clash between second-placed Monaco and 13th-placed Montpellier. The hosts have been in immaculate goalscoring touch of late, netting 9 goals in their last two outings. The visitors, on the other hand, have only managed to find the back of the net on 13 occasions the entire season! This may not be as smooth sailing for Monaco as the above statistics indicate as Marseille, while horrid on attack, have been defensively sound only shipping 13 goals at an average of a goal a game. I expect Marseille to offer dogged resistance but eventually leak a goal. I feel a Monaco late show will see the hosts to a hard-earned three points.

27/20 Caen | 43/20 | Guingamp 22/10 (21:00)

An unpredictable Caen side will welcome Guingamp to the Stade Malherbe in Saturday’s second fixture. The hosts come into this one off the 1-0 defeat to Marseille while the visitors make the trip off the back of a 1-1 draw with Bordeaux. Caen have produced a few upset results in recent weeks, the biggest of which saw them claim the scalp of league leaders Nice. And while Caen have an abysmal record against Guingamp – they have only managed to win one of the last seven games between the sides – I still fancy the hosts to get the win here.

29/20 Nantes | 39/20 | Lille 9/4 (21:00)

Two of the league's strugglers will go head to head this Saturday in a game that could make or break each’s season. A win for the hosts could see them move out of the relegation zone, while a loss for the visitors could see them drop into the bottom three places. Both teams come into this one off the back of defeats with Nantes going down to PSG and Lille falling to Lyon. Lille were slightly more impressive last week but I still don’t feel confident in them getting the victory here. The Totals Under 2.5 goals looks the way to go with this one as both sides have really struggled in front of goal this term. It may not reap a huge dividend at 4/10 but it is the closest thing to a banker that you will find.

15/10 Metz | 9/4 | Lorient 37/20 (21:00)

I am going to keep this one short and sweet as I really don’t think there’s much need to delve too deep into the statistics here. Lorient have been in horrid form this term and have only managed to win two of their 13 games. They were torn apart by Monaco last week, and one gets the feeling that they are destined for the drop. Metz, on the other hand, are enjoying a solid season and come into this one off the back of a highly impressive victory over Toulouse. A Metz win at 15/10 is my best bet for the week.

7/10 Bordeaux | 26/10 | Dijon 4/1 (21:00)

Bordeaux are huge favourites for their tie against Dijon. The hosts have been priced up a rather short 7/10. Which is fair enough when you consider they haven’t lost a league game since the beginning of October. Like Metz last week, I just have this feeling that Dijon will produce an upset. At 4/1, it may prove a smart bit of punting to back the visitors to win this one.

1/1 Montpellier | 23/10 | Nancy 28/10 (21:00)

Saturday’s final fixture sees 13th-placed Montpellier host 18th-placed Nancy. The hosts come into this one off the back of a hard earned 1-1 away draw against Bastia while the visitors make the journey to the Armand Cesari off the back of a morale-boosting victory over Dijon. Both sides have been rather leaky at the back with Montpellier shipping 27 goals this term and Nancy letting in 19. I reckon we’ll see goals this Sunday, which means the Totals Over 2.5 Goals market is a huge runner at 11/10.

Sunday 27 November

33/20 Angers | 2/1 | St. Etienne 19/10 (16:00)

Onto Saturday now, and our first port of call is the Stade Jean-Bouin where St. Etienne will take on an extremely stubborn Angers side. The hosts for Sunday’s encounter have been on a decent run of form and have only lost one game since late September. The visitors have also been in decent nick only losing one of their last six games. Both of these sides pride themselves on defense, which means they 2/1 draw could well be on the cards.

7/10 Nice | 51/20 | Bastia 17/4 (18:00)

The league leaders take on 13th-place Bastia in the penultimate gameweek 14 fixture. This is another game that I’m not going to go too deep into as my money is firmly on the Nice win. Les Aiglons have been a class above this term only losing one of their 13 games. And while Bastia should put up stout resistance, I cannot see them holding out for the full 90 minutes. That old adage of “Don’t look a gift-horse in the mouth” rings extremely true here. Treat yourself to an early Christmas present and back the Nice win at 7/10.

28/10 Lyon | 51/20 | PSG 9/10 (21:45)

We close the weekend out with an absolute blockbuster between Lyon and PSG. The fourth-placed hosts currently sit seven points off PSG and will be eager to cut the defending champions third-place lead to just four points. Both teams come into this one off the back of victories with Lyon registering a 1-0 victory over Lille and PSG beating Nantes 2-0. I don’t fancy tipping a win here as I reckon either side could take it. Instead, I’m going to back the Totals Over 2.5 Goals at 15/20. It may not be the hugest amount of value, but with the last five games seeing three or more goals, I simply can’t help tipping the market.

TREBLE @ 6/1
Nice Win 13/20
Metz Win 15/10
Lyon vs PSG Over 2.5 Goals 15/20

Written by Darry Worthington