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French Ligue 1 Preview

PSG were held to a 2-2 draw away at Marseille as Neymar was dismissed for a second bookable offence
PSG will look to return to winning ways when they open up the matchweek at home against Nice
PSG’s wobble at the weekend afforded Monaco the opportunity to make up valuable ground on the men from the capital, with Unai Emery’s side’s lead atop the standings slashed to four points. Both sides face tricky fixtures this weekend, with PSG opening up the matchweek at home against Nice while Monaco make the trip to Bordeaux. Another full week of fixtures await us, so let’s jump right in.

Friday 27 October

2/11 PSG | Draw 13/2 | Nice 25/2 (20:45)

There have been plenty of questions raised about whether or not PSG’s array of stars – and in particular the Brazilian duo of Neymar and Dani Alves – are even taking this league campaign seriously. The Parisians were held to a 2-2 draw away at Marseille as a petulant Neymar was dismissed for a second bookable offence. More news later broke that he was involved in a pretty feisty row with Unai Emery. Stories like this won’t do much for their confidence heading into a potentially tricky tie with Nice this weekend. Nice, on the other hand, continue to struggle following an excellent season last time out. They were duly beaten at home by Strasbourg this past Sunday. In truth, it probably should have been more considering the number and quality of chances Nice afforded their opposition. PSG should be too strong here and should be backed on the (-1) Handicap at 9/20.

Saturday 28 October

17/10 Bordeaux | 5/2 | Monaco 29/20 (17:00)

Bordeaux suffered a surprise defeat at the hands of struggling Amiens last week. Not the result that the men from the South would have expected nor been happy with. They now have to regroup against a Monaco side who will be rejuvenated following PSG’s slip up last week. The men from the Principality got their first win in three last time out as Balde Dio and Falcao struck either side of half-time as they took a two-point bit out of PSG’s lead atop the standings. They will be further emboldened following their opposition’s loss last week. While I’m tempted to tip Bordeaux, I think that Monaco – with it all to play for again – will come away with the points here.

31/20 Dijon | 21/10 | Nantes 19/10 (20:00)

Dijon have the unenviable task of going head to head with the division’s form team, Nantes at the weekend. Fortunately, they managed to claim an all-important win over Metz last week to condemn the bottom side to their fourth defeat on the trot. Nantes – who are managed by Claudio Ranieri – find themselves keeping company with the likes of PSG and Monaco at the top of the table. The plucky little side are the form team in the division at the moment with five wins and a draw from their last six games. While they don’t play the same electrifying football as Ranieri’s Leicester side, their game is built on a rock solid defence. They’ve only conceded seven times this season and shouldn’t have an issue shutting out Dijon. Take Under 2.5 Goals at 13/20 here.

13/20 Guingamp | 26/10 | Amiens 9/2 (20:00)

Guingamp have done well enough this season and find themselves in 11th on the standings. Their defeat at the hands of Nantes last week came as no real surprise to anyone. That said, they have another opportunity to grab three points when they welcome lowly Amiens to Stade de Roudourou on Saturday. Amiens grabbed a massive 1-0 victory over Bordeaux last week as Guy N’Gosso Massouma grabbed the only goal of the game. The win ensured that Christophe Pelissier’s men remain outside of the drop zone, although they’re by no means out of danger. They’ll look to use last week’s win as a catalyst, but face a tough away trip. Neither side is in particularly good form, play it safe and go Both Teams to Score: Yes at 11/10.

16/10 Strasbourg | 43/20 | Angers 18/10 (20:00)

Strasbourg kept the bottom two sides at arm’s length last week with a vital 2-1 away win over Nice. It was their first win in seven matches and only their second victory of the campaign. They may well find the fixture against Angers a bit tricky, though. Angers have yet to taste defeat on the road, picking up nine points from their five away fixtures. They suffered a 1-0 home defeat last time out against a Toulouse outfit who are starting to look good following an average start to the season. With Angers’ good away form this term, you simply have to take them on the Double Chance at 9/20.

11/10 Montpellier | 22/10 | Rennes 26/10 (20:00)

Montpellier have been brilliant this season and boast the best defensive record in the league. That’s just as well though, as they’ve only managed to find the back of the net on eight occasions. They’re undefeated in six matches, which included back-to-back draws against PSG and Monaco. Rennes will have their work cut out for them going into Saturday’s fixture. A narrow 1-0 win over a struggling Lille was their first win in four attempts as they managed to arrest their slide down the table. It’ll be interesting to see whether or not they can break down the league’s most miserly defence away from home, although I have my doubts. Take Montpellier to win at 11/10.

15/20 Caen | 51/20 | Troyes 4/1 (20:00)

Caen have suffered back-to-back 2-0 defeats over the last two match days, however, I can’t quite understand how they’ve been priced up at 15/20. They have been strong at home, winning three of their five matches at Stade Michel d'Ornano. Peculiarly, Troyes have been pretty solid away from home. Two wins, a defeat and a draw means the side from north-eastern France have claimed a commendable seven points from their travels thus far. They were hit for five last week by a magnificent Lyon, a result they’ll no doubt push to the back of their minds. Get on the away Double Chance here at even money, Troyes are too good a side – especially away from home – to be priced up like this.

Sunday 29 October

1/5 Lyon | 6/1 | Metz 10/1 (15:00)

Lyon come into their tie against cellar-dwellers Metz fresh off a 5-0 hammering of Troyes last week. Memphis Depay netted a 21-minute hat-trick as Bruno Genesio climbed up into fourth place in the league standings, a single point behind Nantes in third. Very few people are giving Metz any chance in this match, and with good reason too. The bottom club have only managed one win in 10 matches, losing their remaining nine fixtures. Take Lyon on the (-1) Handicap here at 5/10 – add to all weekend multiples.

13/10 Toulouse | 21/10 | St. Etienne 23/10 (17:00)

Toulouse have just started to find their feet this season, claiming consecutive wins against Amiens and Angers. Le Tefece Les Pitchouns will have to be at their best when they welcome a strong St. Etienne outfit to the Stadium Municipal. St. Etienne’s strong start to the season now seems a distant memory. They’ve only managed two wins in their last six matches and have dropped down the standings to sixth. They’ll fancy their chances against Toulouse despite the fact that they’ve won their last two games against weak opposition. St. Etienne are the better side, even if form isn’t with them. Back them here at generous odds of 23/10.

22/10 Lille | 49/20 | Marseille 12/10 (21:00)

We wrap things up this weekend with what promises to be a rather one-sided affair. Lille have been absolutely atrocious this season and find themselves in a relegation dog fight with barely a quarter of the season gone. They suffered their fifth defeat of the season last time out, going down 1-0 to a very average Rennes side. Marseille, on the other hand, were unlucky not to come away with all three points against bitter rivals PSG. They were brilliant throughout the match, taking the lead on two occasions only for Edinson Cavani to break their hearts with a brilliant 90th-minute free-kick as the match finished 2-2. Marseille will be full of confidence coming into this game and should be backed at a tasty 12/10.

TREBLE @ 5/1
PSG (-1) Handicap 9/20
Montpellier Win 11/10
Troyes Win/Draw 1/1

Written by Jason Dewey