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31 Mar 2023 / admin

Soccer France Ligue 1 Prediction

Marseille vs Montpellier - Match Preview

⚽ 1 April 2023 - 19:00 GMT +0

After a six-game unbeaten run in Ligue 1 (W2, D4), a 2-0 loss away to fellow relegation contenders Strasbourg ensured Auxerre spent the international break inside the danger zone. They now battle it out here with another relegation candidate, Troyes, in what appears to be a crucial six-pointer, with coach Christophe Pélissier stating this “is a very important match, of course, but so will be the other nine”.

Scoring goals at Stade Abbé Deschamps doesn’t often come easy for AJA, who have failed to find the net in four of their last five home league outings, albeit avoiding defeat in the previous three (W1, D2). Those three games were against current top-half teams, which should give Pélissier’s men believe they can extend their current eight-game unbeaten streak against Troyes in the top flight (W5, D3).

Visitors Troyes came close to securing their first Ligue 1 win since early January, but after conceding a 74th-minute equalizer from the penalty spot they were forced to settle for a 2-2 home draw against struggling Brest last time out. Despite a worrying average of 0.54 points per game since his appointment in November, coach Patrick Kisnorbo should finish the season with Troyes, while the fans rather blame the players’ attitude.

ESTAC may have won just one of their last 20 Ligue 1 matches (D8, L11), but they find themselves only three points adrift of safety ahead of this round and could provisionally close that gap to zero whilst leapfrogging Auxerre in the process. It could probably be another ‘all or nothing’ performance from the visitors, as Troyes are the only Ligue 1 side yet to register an away draw this campaign (W3, L11), leaning more towards nothing lately after five consecutive away losses.

📋 Players to watch: Auxerre’s resurgence may need a lift from Gaëtan Perrin, having netted in two of their three home league wins, both as his team's first scorer. Troyes’ Mama Baldé could be a threat after scoring all but one of his ten league goals on the road, whilst he also netted away for Guinea-Bissau during the international break.

Hot stat: A league-high 86% of Troyes’ away matches have seen the opening goal scored within the first 30 minutes.

Marseille vs Montpellier - Match Preview

⚽ 1 April 2023 - 23:00 GMT +0

Manager Bruno Génésio is challenging his Rennes side to be more consistent as they look to build on their stunning 2-0 win over PSG before the international break. The Red and Blacks have only registered back-to-back Ligue 1 wins once since October, and despite the boss describing himself as “very satisfied” with how they played at the Parc des Princes, he admits “we must be able to show that in 90% of matches” to qualify for European football.

Rennes have now won three of their last five league matches (D1, L1), leaving them in fifth place. However, recent home defeats to Lille and Marseille have dented their ambitions of reaching the UEFA Champions League (UCL), so supporters will be hoping their side can bounce back to the form which saw them register ten successive Ligue 1 victories at Roazhon Park earlier this season.

Visitors Lens is also targeting a place in the UCL, whose manager Franck Haise has made “bringing the club back to the European Cup” for the first time in two decades his top priority. The Blood and Gold currently sit third in the table, seven points above Rennes, and have been remarkably consistent throughout the campaign, losing just three times in 28 outings (W16, D9).

Their away form has been an Achilles' heel though, as they have registered just four league wins on the road all season, including only one in their last seven outings (D5, L1). That doesn’t bode well for their trip west to Roazhon Park, where they have lost on ten of their last 15 Ligue 1 visits (W2, D3), conceding at least two goals in eight of those defeats.

📋 Key battle: Karl Toko Ekambi, who netted in Rennes’ win over PSG, has managed just one victory in his previous five clashes with Lens (D3, L1). He will be looking to out-score opposition striker Loïs Openda, who has bagged five goals in his last two games and is now unbeaten in the 14 club matches in which he has netted (W11, D3) since March 2022.

Hot stat: Rennes have conceded just two goals during the first half of their home league matches this season, the lowest total in Ligue 1.

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