Soccer Betting News - SA's Leading Soccer Betting Newspaper: French Ligue 1: Gameweek 30 Preview

French Ligue 1: Gameweek 30 Preview

Neymar is set to make his return from injury for Paris-Saint Germain

Paris-Saint-Germain have won seven of the last eight Ligue 1 titles but are letting this season slip through their fingers and into the hands of Lille who last won a title in 2010.

Last weekend’s big-hitter, Monaco vs Lille, played out to one point a piece in favour of Les Douges with both teams missing guilt edged chances.

Third-placed Olympique Lyon play host to second-placed Paris Saint-Germain this weekend in Ligue 1’s headline act.

Let’s step right into the action.

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Friday 19 March

Saint-Etienne 31/10
Draw 26/10
Monaco 17/20
(22:00)

Podium-chasing Monaco failed to capitalise against Lille in their last match, walking away with one point. With Monaco having basically secured fourth place, 11 points clear of fifth, I am sure head coach Niko Kovac will have his eyes set on a third place UEFA Champions League finish, and the title slowly slipping into the back of his agenda. The teenage confidents Willem Geubbels (age 19) and Pietro Pellegri (19) with a goal a piece this season are back in the squad after short injury lay-offs.

Saint-Etienne welcome ASM into their home after a positive away trip in their last fixture, winning one goal to nil with a scintillating effort from outside the box by Wahbi Khazri, finally winning the battle with his first goal from open play in over a year. Now six points from the bottom of the table, the Saints are slowly distancing themselves from relegation. Claude Puel will have five players returning from injury and back in full training, including veteran defender Mathieu Debuchy, who is back from suspension.

My well-placed money is on Monaco to start the weekend off on a good note.

Saturday 20 March

Metz 47/20
Draw 21/10
Rennes 13/10
(14:00)

There is nowhere to go in the French Ligue 1 for either of these teams, but we will dub the opening fixture for Saturday ‘the Battle for Seventh’ as eighth-placed Rennais (41 points) take on Metz (42 points) looking to defend their seventh place on the table.

Bruno Genesio found his first win in his second game in charge to break Rennais’ six-game losing streak with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Strasbourg. The Red and Blacks will be on a mission to get back-to-back wins, and in doing so, steal Metz’s seventh place on the table.

Metz have only ever defeated Rennais once in their eight ties. The Maroons, or rather in French, Les Grenats, produced a four-goal thriller in a back and fourth goal-for-goal 2-2 draw in gameweek 29. With first-choice keeper Alexandre Oukidja still suspended until 05/04/21, Marc-Aurele Caillard has yet to keep himself a clean sheet in his three appearances.

Metz’s defence has been found wanting in recent games, and the Rennais’ back-line in the same boat, ‘the Battle for Seventh’ should be goal-filled. I’m going for Stade Rennais to Win & Both Teams to Score at 48/10.

Nice 37/20
Draw 24/10
Marseille 14/10
(18:00)

After an impressive 3-1 home win over Brest, Marseille have managed to tie points with fifth-places Lens for Europa League qualification. The Olympians now travel to the beautiful south of France in a matchup with Nice, where most people picture beautiful beaches and relaxation, expect all business from Jorge Sampaoli.

OGC Nice have put a run of positive results together, but still dropped to 12th after drawing to Lorient in what was an under-performing Eagles. Whilst putting together a remarkable eleven goals this season, Amine Gouiri has failed to find the back of the net in two consecutive games now and was subbed off with visible frustration on his face in the 77th minute. Nice are in no-man’s-land in the Ligue 1 table but will look to upset Marseille’s crusade for European football. Back the Olympians at 14/10.

Sunday 21 March

Strasbourg 15/10
Draw 47/20
Lens 18/10
(14:00)

Sunday’s opening fixture sees Strasbourg play host to Lens at the Meinau Stadium. The Racers have a lot to still fight through to secure top-flight football for next season as they sit just three points clear of relegation. After being narrowly defeated by an early goal in the opening quarter of the match, Thierry Laurey will seek redemption in the upcoming fixture.

Stang et Or (Blood and Gold) have scored 12 goals in their last five matches in all competitions and we can expect more from them in this fixture with Cameroonian international Ignatius Ganago reported back in training this week. The team are without a doubt in scoring fashion with an average of 1.52 goals per game this season. Simply put, back Strasbourg 15/10.

Nantes 5/4
Draw 22/10
Lorient 23/10
(16:00)

The former PSG player and coach, now Nantes boss Antoine Koumbouare, masterminded a 2-1 victory over the French champions, and transformed the attitude and morale of the squad, earning five points from the last 12 available. The Canaries go into the home fixture against Lorient with their heads held high, hoping to keep it that way.

Lorient will not take this match-up lying down knowing Nantes are coming off the back of an impressive victory. Lorient earned a point in their last outing and will look to create some space between them and the bottom of the table. This will be a fiercely contested matchup considering the teams are sitting on a one-point difference.

This fixture is difficult to call with both teams fighting relegation. However, after a ‘David vs Goliath’ display by Nantes, 5/4 is the bet.

Brest 31/20
Draw 2/1
Angers 19/10
(16:00)

Brest and Angers are both on the back of a loss heading into their matchup. Neither team looked threatening in front of goal in their last 90 minutes with a combined two shots on target between both teams in gameweek 29. Head to head, Brest and Angers are on three wins each and one stalemate.

In their last home game in the league, Brest put three in the back of the net, and Coach Olivier Dall’Oglio should focus on the final third in training this week if they wish to acquire three points. The Pirates have conceded six goals in their last two games, but with both defenders Christopher Herelle and Denys Bain back from injury, Dall’Oglio will have more to choose from in the backline.

After a promising 5-0 win in the Coupe de France and a decent run of form in the league, SCO Angers were slight favourites in the odds makers’ eyes, yet watching the match, they struggled to put anything of worth, together fashioning just one shot despite having 54% of the possession in the match. Their defensive play has been a lot sounder than their opponents, keeping three clean sheets in their last five. I am behind the away team, Angers, at 19/10.

Montpellier 11/10
Draw 9/4
Bordeaux 5/2
(16:00)

I was confident in a Montpellier victory last gameweek considering their unbeaten streak and their opponents’ knack for conceding goals.

Yes, Montpellier are unbeaten in nine games, but drawing four of those fixtures takes away quite a bit of my confidence in them. This week I will not be hoodwinked by an unbeaten streak.

Bordeaux won their last match against the whipping boys of Ligue 1, Dijon, and if they did not, I would have been surprised. Bordeaux have faced Montpellier 22 times, winning nine and drawing five, with Montpellier one win short on eight. With five draws in the books between the two, Bordeaux in high spirits, and the favourites on an unbeaten draw streak, back the stalemate at 9/4.

Dijon 9/4
Draw 47/20
Reims 12/10
(16:00)

There is not much left to say about Dijon with their last win coming just before Christmas last year, which was probably just a present of relief before going winless in 13 matches and 10 of those being losses. David Linares joined late November last year to try and turn the car around before it crashed, but has failed dismally and you begin to wander the fate of the coach, because the fate of the team is Ligue 2.

Reims are not losing, but they are not winning either, with four draws out of five. A 1-1 draw against third-placed Lyon was not a bad result in the previous gameweek, but head coach David Guion will know his boys will fancy goals against the already Ligue 2 team Dijon. Get on the away win at 12/10.

Lille 7/20
Draw 37/10
Nimes 15/2
(18:05)

Nimes travel to Costieres Stadium hoping to take a bite out of the top of the table to work their way out of the Ligue 1 dungeons. The Crocodiles have only lost one in their last five and the challenge of Ligue 1 title contenders is most probably too much to handle.

Lille head coach Christopher Galtier was happy with his 0-0 draw to Monaco after his team were second best in the match and in statistics. As Les Dogues warm up to face Paris Saint-Germaine in the Coupe de France quarter-final on the 17th of March, Nimes will still be the main priority as Galtier will aim to keep pressure on his boys even though PSG let up in their shock defeat. To add some meat to the bone, Matchbet + Totals, Lille + Over 2.5 goals at 12/10 is the way to go.

Lyon 39/20
Draw 37/10
PSG 11/10
(22:00)

After Lyon missing the opportunity to equal top of the table in points in last Friday’s matchup, they now take center stage in the headline act on a Sunday evening against Paris Saint-Germain.

PSG travel to Groupama Stadium where Mauricio Pochettino looks to right their wrongs after losing 0-1 in the last fixture between the two, as well as their embarrassing loss to Nantes.

With Angel Di Maria and Marquinhos dealing with personal issues directly affecting the game with Nantes, and Kylian Mbappe practically handing Nantes a goal, I believe Brazilian wonder boy Neymar will be in the team sheet to bolster up confidence after PSG opted for caution in gameweek 29 return.

Lyon at home have been a force to reckon with, having lost just two out of their 14 home games. The star attraction for the Kids, Memphis Depay, has registered 14 goals and nine assists this season in Ligue 1, but has not scored in the past four games, we can expect a hungry lion at the attacking helm for second-placed Lyon.

Even though PSG suffered an embarrassing defeat against Nantes, they are the French giants for a reason. Back them on the Matchbet & BTTS at 5/2.

TREBLE @ 17/1
Marseille Win 14/10
Reims Win 12/10
PSG Win & BTTS 5/2

Written by Joshua Gaillard