Ligue 1: Life through a Lens

Gameweek 8 was a winner for the column. Dermot is back to analyse week 9 and hopefully continue the strong run of form.

On the back of another great win last week we are going for the first 3 games in Gameweek 9. We were blessed that the column’s hero, Mohamed Bayo, was so wasteful in front of goal. Monaco could and should have been 3-0 down. Thankfully the bit of a quality advantage shone through and Monaco scored 3 goals from 3 shots on target.

 

Lens Vs Reims – October 1st 20:00 BST

Lens were an unlucky selection in week 7 and proved their merit with a convincing win at the Vélodrome last weekend. Frank Haise’s side are alongside Nice in the “Best of the Rest” category as the tactician continues to get the most from his side.

Reims had a terrific result against Nantes, winning 3-1. We are 8 league games into the season and they have only lost twice. Massive credit is due to Oscar García’s charges’ resilience. On paper, this team is a certainty to be relegated. Currently they they sit 11th after some great battling displays, the pick of which was beating Rennes away 2-0. Whilst they will have no fear of Lens, I expect a home win.

For a bit of context, a home win for Roma (4th) Vs Empoli (8th) in Serie A is less than 4/6 where as Lens is nearly even money.

 

Montpellier Vs Strasbourg – October 2nd 16:00 BST

Montpellier drew a blank in week 8, but struggling away to PSG is no disgrace. To their credit, they matched Paris toe-to-toe and that game hinted they will get back to scoring ways this week. In Valerie Germain, Montpellier couldn’t have found a better player to replace Andy Delort. Germain is busy, physical and is pretty good in front of goal too. If he plays well Montpellier will do well for the rest of the season.

Strasbourg have counter attack down to a tee and one would expect plenty of opportunities in Montpellier on Saturday. Although, they were completely outplayed by Lille last weekend, which is a worry. Lille though are the champions and are getting back to their best. Montpellier’s defense is not nearly as good as Lille’s so there will be plenty of chance for the now settled partnership of Diallo & Ajorque. Both teams scoring and 3 or more goals looks likely.

 

Nice vs Brest – October 2rd 20:00 BST

Nice put an abject Saint-Etienne side to the sword last weekend to make up for the disappointment of not beating Lorient the previous game. Galtier now knows his best XI which makes this team all the more difficult to beat. Coupled with the fact that Amine Gouiri is starting to fulfill his potential, Nice can kick on and become a force in the Ligue.

Brest are still looking for their first win after 4 draws and 4 losses. Amazingly they have scored in every game so far. Looking at their previous outings, they are really unlucky to have not won yet. There were also, however, a number of games they should probably have lost. I don’t think Nice are the type of side to allow them figure out whether it’s going to be a good or bad day at the office for them. I’m predicting their goal scoring run to stop and for the home side to win.

 

SRD Selections:

Lens win @ 9/10 (Betfair, Unibet)

Montpellier Vs Strasbourg BTTS & Over 2.5 @ 10/11 (Skybet, Bet365)

Nice to win to nil @ 2/1 (Skybet)

Above in a treble pays 19/2 in a treble (Skybet)

 

Personal punt

These aren’t a tips, more of an observation. This season the French teams that have played in Europe have been abysmal the week after, all except PSG. So bad, I’ve purposefully avoided any of them in this weeks selections. With that in mind I’ve noticed Bordeaux are a massive 7/1 away to Monaco (who play Sociedad away on Thursday). Rennes are also overpriced at 9/2 in places. Yes PSG are 8 wins from 8 but Rennes have the type of attack to really trouble the Parisiens.

I’d price Rennes at 5/2 and Bordeaux closer to 3/1 so there is a lot of value in Skybet’s 45/1 for the pair to win. An alternative angle that still pays a decent amount is both sides in a Draw No Bet double. This still pays 25/1 with Skybet. It will at least cover should one side win and the other fail.