Friday Ligue 1 & 2 Pre Match Analysis

Auxerre – Tours

This really should end up as a home win. AJA have won 4 of their last 5 and are in really good form. Continue reading

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Friday Ligue 1 & 2 Pre Match Analysis

Ajaccio – Dijon

ACA are bang out of form and would just take any point they can in this match. Dijon have shown signs of choking recently but have at least won their last two away games. Could be a draw but overall I’m siding with the visitors. They have the better quality and a greater desire to actually win outright.

Prediction: 0-1

Arles – Le Havre

The real question here is motivation. If Le Havre actually try and want to win, then I really think they have a good chance. They are the better side by a million miles and have a squad in perfectly fine condition. Arles though, are in desperate need of the points much more, so that’s a factor to consider. It is worth watching the start of this game to see what sort of mood HAC are in. If they look ‘interested’ then backing them IR is a good idea.

Prediction: 1-3

Chateauroux – GFC

Both teams need the points for different reasons, but for me, Chateauroux are brown bread. They have employed two good tactically astute managers this season but neither of them can do anything with this shitheap squad. The quality just isn’t there and they are drinking in last chance saloon. GFC aren’t the greatest away side but they can get 3 points tonight as long as they don’t choke.

Prediction: 0-1

Nancy – Niort

With Niort there is always a high risk of a draw but I think Nancy take this one tonight. They really need all 3 points in order to stay in touch with the promotion race and the extra desire to win might be crucial. Niort look safe in midtable and they might not have as much motivation as the hosts. The price isn’t great but Nancy take victory IMO.

Prediction: 2-0

Nimes – Clermont

Since their administrative relegation was awarded, Nimes have been very relaxed and have no real pressure on their shoulders. They are just enjoying their football with the faint hope they might make the top 3, hence avoid the relegation. Les Crocos have been playing a really open attacking style and just going for it. I think this will be a good game containing a few goals, the overs are definitely worth considering along with the home win.

Prediction: 3-1

Orleans – Troyes

A lot of people may think this will end up as an easy away win but Troyes are missing a fair few players tonight. They aren’t as good as their ligue position might suggest either IMO. They must be respected for their ability to pick up results, but it’s not always convincing. I’m not totally sure they will enjoy a trip to Orleans, one of the worst pitches in Ligue 2 and I could see a low scoring draw.

Prediction: 0-0

Sochaux – Creteil

Just 2 wins in 8 for Sochaux, but they still aren’t out of the promotion picture. They need to get 3 points tonight though, and I think they will. They should have way more motivation than Creteil, who now look safe in midtable.It’s not as if the visitors are in great form either, so I think Les Lionceaux will prevail, their price however is very short.

Prediction: 2-0

Tours – Laval

Laval have the most draws of anyone in Ligue 2, and Tours have the least. But considering the Nimes’ administrative relegation and that only the bottom 2 are likely to go down, this changes the dynamics for Tours. Suddenly, they don’t ‘have’ to win games and draws are a good result for them. Laval perhaps have little to play for, so motivation is on the side of the hosts, but this may well end all square.

Prediction: 1-1

Caen – Monaco

I think this will be a good game of football and potentially exciting. Caen have been one of the best teams since the winter break and will always ‘give it a go’ in most fixtures. Monaco have the reputation of being very negative, but can sometimes be more expansive away from home in matches like this. It wouldn’t actually surprise me if Caen won here. Monaco have played a lot of games recently, including on Tues night vs MHSC. With their upcoming CL QF against Juventus on the horizon, it’s possible they could be distracted. I like over 2.25 goals @ a nice price, both teams have capabilities of scoring in this.

Prediction: 2-2

With just 8 games left then we are getting to the stage of the season where prices can be a bit short on many teams, with the bookies giving nothing away. Motivation also has to be considered. Remember, it looks like only the bottom two will go down because Nimes’ are already relegated administratively. The only way this will change is if Nimes finish in the top 3, which is unlikely.

Some potential bets to consider tonight are Le Havre (as long as they look interested and are motivated). Nimes are a big price considering there is no pressure on their shoulders. It also looks like a match which should have plenty of goals in it so over 2.25 caught my eye. If I had to put my life on one team to win tonight it would be Sochaux but @ 1.70 they are a terrible price. I am not in the business of staking highly on anything at this stage of the season, but I have put below a couple of suggested combos which could be worth a nibble.

Meatman treble – Nancy win, Sochaux win & Nimes v Clermont over 2.5 goals (odds roughly 7.50)

Longshot treble – Nimes, Le Havre and GFC Ajaccio all to win (odds roughly 14/1)

Good Friday Ligue 1 & 2 Pre Match Analysis & Picks

Auxerre – Nimes

Nimes have actually been statistically the 2nd best team since the winter break, which is rather shocking. They have really been aggressive, almost fearless as the match fixing allegations still hang over their heads. But, if you look at their team on paper it’s nothing special and sooner or later I would expect their level to drop off a bit. Could it happen tonight? Well, maybe, but Auxerre might have their eye on the midweek Coupe de France semi final against Guingamp, which is obviously a massive fixture for them. There’s no doubt that Auxerre are the better team but I couldn’t stake anything here and I’m not totally sure which way the match will go.

Prediction: Auxerre 1-1 Nimes NO BET

Clermont – Angers

Angers have found a way to grind out results and keep clean sheets, but do miss a couple of their starting backline here which might impact them negatively. But I still think they will probably have too much for Clermont, who aren’t really a very good side at all. I don’t expect this match will be much of a classic and it should be pretty tight, but ultimately Angers might just sneak the win, or at very worst draw. I am not going to bet on the fixture but I like the chances of the away team here.

Prediction: Clermont 0-1 Angers NO BET

Creteil – Orleans

This may well be the lowest scoring fixture of the night. Neither team is in particularly good form and have struggled to find the back of the net recently. Each side is locked together on 33 points, which is currently 7 clear of the relegation zone. Right now, a draw would probably be a good outcome for both and I could see them cancelling each other out here. There’s no way I could risk putting money on anyone here, and considering they both have 24 draws between them this season, another all square encounter looks likely.

Prediction: Creteil 0-0 Orleans NO BET

Laval – Sochaux

No team has drawn more games than Laval this year (16 times) and they have proven very difficult to beat. That’s especially been the case here at home where only one team has managed to inflict defeat on them. That actually occurred a couple of weeks ago when Nimes came to town, so maybe it might start a poorer run? I’m not so sure myself, although Sochaux won’t be easy opposition. Les Lionceaux are still in with a shot of promotion but need to keep accumulating points. Ideally they’d love to win but a draw wouldn’t be the worst outcome for them here. I could see this one being a tight fixture with few goals in it, perhaps a draw is most likely.

Prediction: Laval 0-0 Sochaux NO BET

Le Havre – Nancy

This should be a good game of football and probably the best fixture to watch tonight in terms of entertainment. Few teams have actually played better football than HAC in the last couple of months and their defeat at Angers last time out ended a run of 8 unbeaten matches. At home this season they have only lost one match, so been pretty reliable in front of their own fans. Nancy have only lost 1 of their last 8 games too, but a terrible midseason run means they are still 6 points off the promotion places. If either team is going to launch a late promotion bid then 3 points tonight are fairly essential. I think this’ll be a really open game and I like backing over 2.25 in it. Le Havre are also a nice price, but I will refrain from taking them because Nancy are so desperate for 3 points themselves.

Prediction: Le Havre 3-2 Nancy
Recommended bet: Over 2.25 goals @ 2.02 4/10

Niort – Arles

Niort have only lost one match since 12th December, but always draw a really high number of matches. They tend to be quite a negative team and struggle to score goals, but are always pretty solid. I’m sure another point would suit them just fine tonight too, but this could be an interesting match. Arles are 8 points from safety so really need to be winning matches and I expect them to be quite aggressive here. They will have no fear and if they collected all 3 points I wouldn’t be totally shocked. The southern outfit have looked much improved under the management of Victor Zvunka and won’t go down without a fight. I’m not going to bet in this fixture but I have the feeling of a shock.

Prediction: Niort 1-2 Arles NO BET

Tours – Chateauroux

This is a proper relegation ‘6 pointer’ and victory is essential for both. Starting with Chateauroux, they are venturing into last chance saloon now, 8 adrift from safety. They have to win these sort of matches against direct rivals, draws simply won’t cut it for them now. The situation for Tours is a bit better, considering they are only 4 point adrift of the nearest safe spot. But they will surely have to look at this fixture and think ‘must win’. A home match against Chateauroux is probably the easiest fixture you can have all season and anything less than victory could be very harmful. In my experience, these sort of matches in france tend to be very open and contain numerous goals. Both have to win so should push really hard, potentially leaving quite a few gaps at the back. Chateauroux have only scored 8 away goals all season but Tours have only kept 2 clean sheets out of 29, so something has to give. I think the hosts will win but my favoured bet is over 2.5, this match just smells of goals to me.

Prediction: Tours 3-1 Chateauroux
Recommended bet: Over 2.5 goals @ 2.02 4/10

Valenciennes – Ajaccio

Both teams are missing quite a lot of players, Ajaccio are especially ravaged in midfield which makes me give the edge to VA slightly. The hosts are also in much better form, unbeaten in 4 games, whilst the visitors travel here on the back of 4 straight defeats. But overall I expect this to be a cagey fixture when you consider where both are located in the table, hovering just above the relegation zone. If Tours win tonight then both of these sides will be starting to shit themselves a bit, victory tonight would be worth its weight in gold. But at the same time, the fear of losing is probably so great that I wouldn’t be surprised to see a draw. If any team is leading with not long left, they will likely defend MEGA deep, so to see a late equaliser at either end wouldn’t be a surprise.

Prediction: Valenciennes 1-1 Ajaccio NO BET

Monaco – St Etienne

Both teams are in good form heading into this fixture and have won their last 3 consecutive games. Monaco have actually been one of the best teams in Ligue 1 since the start of December, winning 10 of their last 14 fixtures and losing just once during this period. The big question is exactly how much the upcoming CL quarter final with Juventus is on their mind. That is obviously a massive match and it’s possible they could be ‘looking ahead’ and it impact their performance here. St Etienne have the 2nd best away record in ligue 1 and will be no pushovers tonight. My overall feeling is for a draw. I don’t think either side will be easy to beat and Monaco have had the tendency to drop too many points at Le Stade Louis II this year.

Prediction: Monaco 1-1 St Etienne NO BET