FRENCH football expert Gary Clarke (@Gaz_Tips) shares his thoughts on Sunday’s action from Ligue 1, picking out his three favourite fancies.
Amiens v Marseille | 17th September 2017, 14:00
Amiens has had two impressive wins on the bounce after having a horrid start losing their opening 3 Ligue 1 games without scoring. A home 3-0 win against Nice was mighty impressive, the scoreline flattered them no doubt but they definitely deserved to win that game.
Last week at Strasbourg they showed they can scrap when needed too as they came away with a smash and grab 1-0 win at the normally solid at home Ligue 2 champions of last season. Last day of the transfer window they lost Tanguy NDombele which may be a problem in the long run, the midfielder joined Lyon and he was their best player so far this season.
Marseille comes into this game in all sorts of problems in regards to Ligue 1. Lost their last two games to an aggregate of 9-2 and are shipping goals for fun. Both Monaco and Rennes looked like scoring every time they attacked them.
They brought in Aymen Abdennour to try help things but he has looked worse which seemed pretty impossible to do. The top third of the pitch is quality on paper but they really need to get it together before they drop too far behind in the race for Europe.
For me, I see goals in this match. Amiens seem to like to attack both home and away. At Saint Etienne one of the better defences in Ligue 1 they didn’t sit back looking for a draw, they had several good opportunities to score and they ended up losing 3-0 but on another day the result could have been easily in their favour. Marseille, as I said, are awful at the back but going forward they have quality. I’m expecting at least three goals in this game. A lacklustre performance again from Marseille would heap pressure on coach Rudi Garcia.
Angers v Metz | Sunday 17th September 2017, 16:00
Angers should be happy with the start they’ve had, they picked up draws at Marseille and Saint Etienne to go along with draws at home to Lille and Bordeaux. On paper, they looked to have a rough opening schedule but they’ve looked good in each one of those games and got themselves a win on the board away at Amiens also. Bruno Ekambi a player they have who is a very skilful player. He’ll be on the move at the end of the season.
Metz, well, what can you say, they’re a poor side. At Caen they looked sloppy all over the pitch and made Caen look a very good side. They’ve lost their last six Ligue 1 games and have been brushed aside in every game in all honesty. They’re a home for old men and look primed for relegation.
After a quite tough opening few games, Angers must be happy to see Metz turning up to Stade Raymond Kopa. This should be a game that Angers win quite comfortably.
Rennes v Nice| Sunday 17th September 2017, 16:00
Rennes were majestic last weekend at the Velodrome against Marseille and things don’t get much easier this weekend Nice come to town fresh of their own ram raid last weekend. Rennes are a very exciting young side, they are full of movement and verve when they go forward and always seem to be involved in games with goals.
Defensively they’re suspect, they’ve conceded in every game and in three if their five games they’ve conceded at least two.
Nice had every poor start to the season until last weekend when they annihilated their local rivals Monaco 4-0 in a result which came out of nowhere. On paper, their 1-11 is very strong and is top 4 material I think and if they can get it together week in week out they will soon storm back up the league table.
They managed to hold on to John Michel Seri and if he can get his head past the summer madness he was involved in then that’s a massive boost to Nice, he is absolutely top class.
Goals are on the menu in this game as well for me. I don’t see how it won’t have them. Both teams are very strong attacking teams, full of quality.
PSG v Lyon| Sunday 17th September 2017, 20:00
Not much to say about PSG really, head and shoulders the best side in the league and that top 3 is the best in world football in my opinion right now. Di Maria and Draxler, two top-class footballers not getting a look in. Says it all.
Lyon has a front 4 which also has to be respected, however. Mariano has had a very good start to the season, Bertrand Traore has been impressive also and Nabil Fekir looks as if he can get back to the player he was, which was top quality.
Defensively again though can’t really have them. Jeremy Morel isn’t very good and Rafael is more interested in going forward than backwards. They were very lucky to beat Guingamp last weekend.
Well PSG will win was just a matter of can I get anything to go with it. Over 3.5 goals I think is safe. There’s a high possibility Lyon could score with their attack; however, I think there’s also a high possibility they could ship 4 in at the other end.
Amiens v Marseille – Over 2.5 goals Amiens Marseille (59/50 Marathon)
Angers v Metz – Angers win (11/20 SportingBet)
Rennes v Nice – BTTS and over 2.5 goals Rennes Nice (3/2 Sky bet)
PSG v Lyon – PSG/over 3.5 ( 5/6 Skybet)