Ligue 1 Preview – 3 Games To Keep Your Eye On – 10/09/2016

GAMEWEEK 4 – LIGUE 1

Written by Zach Wu

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Lyon vs Bordeaux

Lyon have a good record in this fixture, having lost just once in the past 7 (W4 D2)

Lyon are also in good form, having lost just 4 of their last 20.

They have been undefeated on their own turf at the Parc OL, (W9 D2), scoring 32 and conceding just 8.

Bordeaux have begun life under new coach Jocelyn Gourvennec with (W2 L1) and hope to add Lyon’s scalp to their collection.

However, history is against them. They have been frail away from home, having won just 3 of their last 23 away games (D8 L12).

Diego Rolan will be key for them, having assisted 2 of Bordeaux’s last 4 goals against Lyon

For Lyon, Jeremy Morel, Mathieu Valbuena, Nabil Fekir are definitely out while Alexander Lacazette is a doubt after being substituted off at half time in Lyon’s defeat to Dijon.

For Bordeaux, Jeremy Toulalan, Pablo and Nicolas Maurice-Belay are out injured.

Writer’s Prediction: Lyon had terrible spacing and lethargic off the ball movement in their last outing, a defeat to Dijon. They should be fresher after the international break. Bordeaux have been frail defensively when Cedric Carrasso was absent. His presence will stabilise the ever changing defence in front of him. Bordeaux have not impressed massively when in possession but have been deadly on counter. This game depends on who gets the first goal. Lyon might just edge this with their superior quality. 2-1 to Lyon.

Form Guide: Lyon (L W W L W) Bordeaux (W L W L D)

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Lille vs Monaco

Lille have had a wretched start to their season, having won just 1 in their last 5. (D2 L2)

However, history is with them, having won 5 of their last 6 home games against Monaco. (L1)

They are also strong at home, unbeaten in their last 9 league games. (W6 D3)

Their dangerman will be ex-Swansea striker Eder, having been involved in 6 goals and 6 assists in just 16 league games.

Monaco are in good form, losing just once in their last 8 league games. (W5 D2)

They have also been strong on the road, having lost just 2 of their last 8 away games. (W2 D4)

In addition, they also have started strongly, their best start to a season since 13/14

For Lille, a host of players are out, with Rio Mavuba, Rony Lopes, Marko Basa, Mounir Obbadi and Junior Tallo all unavailable for the clash.

For Monaco, Thomas Lemar, Rademal Falcao, Guido Carrillo and Kylian Mbappe are all injured.

Writer’s Prediction: Lille have struggled to connect the midfield and attack ever since Florent Balmont and Sofiane Boufal left. A recent change to a 4231 with Benzia in the hole has helped in ball progression but it may not be enough. Especially against a Monaco side who are in good form and aim to challenge Paris and improve on their 3rd placed finish from last year. 1-2 to Monaco.

Form Guide: Lille (D W L L D) Monaco (W W W W D)

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Nice vs Marseille

Nice have a good record in this fixture, losing just 2 of their last 9 meetings. (W3 D2)

They are also on a good run of form, with their best start to a season since 03/04.

Also, they are also going strong at the Allianz Riveria, unbeaten in their last 7 home games. (W6 D1)

Their defensive unit has been secure on paper at least, having conceded just 1 goal in their past 3 league games.

Marseille have somewhat indifferent form, having lost only 1 of their last 7 Ligue 1 games (W3 D3)

However, they have a torrid record away from home, having won just once in their last 7 league games. (D4 L3)

Remy Cabella will be key for them, having been involved in Marseille’s last 2 league goals. (1 goal 1 assist)

For Nice, Maxime Le Blanchard and Mickael Le Bihan are nursing injuries and will be out.

For Marseille, Abou Diaby, Henri Bedimo and Romain Alessandrini will have to sit out this clash

Writer’s Prediction: Nice have edged out narrow wins early on but have lacked familiarity with Lucian Favre’s space orientated zonal marking. Players have been horribly out of position at times and left opponents in space. Marseille have been recovering from a summer of turmoil with Franck Passi trying to steady the ship. Marseille looked dreadful against Guingamp and Toulouse but there was evidence of significant progress with better positioning and team shape against a Lorient side (albeit terribly out of form). Nice to just edge it. 2-1 Nice.

Form Guide:  Nice (D W W W W) Marseille (W D L D W)

Will these be the most interesting games in the league? Let us know in the comments below!

You can check out the writer on Twitter @cityzenforlife