Soccer France Ligue 1 Prediction
Rennes vs Reims - Match Preview
⚽ 15 April 2023 - 15:00 GMT +0
Optimism has steadily deteriorated for Rennes since their great 2-0 win at league leaders PSG before the international break as they’ve lost their following two league outings, the most recent of which was a 3-1 defeat away to Lyon at the weekend. Manager Bruno Génésio must now avoid three consecutive league losses for the first time in more than one year if his side is to reduce their two-point gap to fifth-placed Lille and keep their European aspirations alive.
Rennes’ longest-ever top-flight home winning streak (W10) captivated fans of the club two months ago, but they have since felt the harsh reality of Ligue 1 football as their side followed that up with three losses from four games at Roazhon Park (W1). However, Génésio's men have long since showcased their ability to bounce back by following up each of their previous ten away league losses with a home win, which speaks volumes of the character within the group.
Visitors Reims may have suffered their first league losses under coach Will Still against Marseille last month, but they reacted well by taking points in their following two outings (W1, D1), although Still said he was “frustrated” after their 1-1 draw against Brest on Sunday. European qualification is still possible as Reims sat only three points off sixth-placed Rennes ahead of this matchday, so they would provisionally move level with their opponents with a crucial win here.
An away game presents a fantastic opportunity for the Red and Whites given that they are unbeaten in their previous 11 league road trips (W3, D8), representing the longest such run across the top five European leagues! The omens look good for the Champagne club on the H2H front as well, squaring off against a Rennes side they’ve beaten ‘to nil’ in three of the previous four H2Hs held here (D1).
📋 Players to watch: Rennes’ Amine Gouiri has scored all four of his league goals in 2023 within the opening 30 minutes of play. He’s up against Reims’ lucky charm, Marshall Munetsi, who is now undefeated in his 11 goalscoring appearances since joining the club in 2019 (W9, D2).
⚡ Hot stat: Just one of the previous 61 Ligue 1 H2Hs ended goalless.
Paris SG vs Lens - Match Preview
⚽ 15 April 2023 - 19:00 GMT +0
With a six-point cushion in their quest for the Ligue 1 crown, table-topping PSG look highly likely to clock up an 11th French top-flight title which would see them take the outright record. That gap to second place could lengthen this weekend too as PSG host the side currently behind them in Lens, but considering the French juggernauts haven’t won any of the last three Ligue 1 H2Hs (D2, L1), they could be left sitting uncomfortably on Saturday night.
Losing their last two home league games without as much as scoring a goal certainly hasn’t helped PSG’s title bid, and considering they lost the reverse H2H 3-1, that home run could yet get worse. A 35-match unbeaten home league run preceded that duo of defeats (W30, D5), form PSG will be keen to get back to in double-quick time, but with a fractious Parc des Princes atmosphere of late, playing at home may not be the blessing it seems for PSG.
Lens will be hoping to capitalise upon any home jitters knowing a victory would cut PSG’s lead to three points as they eye up a first top-flight title since 1997/98. In contrast to their title rivals, Lens make the trip to the French capital in red-hot form on the back of four successive league victories, leaving them on the brink of matching their best consecutive run of wins this season which was set in October-November.
That eye-catching run has played a part in Lens racking up 63 points after 30 rounds, their best tally at this stage in any Ligue 1 season. Their success has largely been built on solidity in the first half before chasing the game after the break, with no team in Ligue 1 trailing at half-time in fewer games this season than Lens’ two, while their league-low nine league goals conceded in the opening 45 minutes this term showcases their defensive resilience.
📋 Players to watch: Despite having his name booed at the Parc des Princes, Lionel Messi could become just the third player to net at least 15 goals and provide 15 assists in a Ligue 1 season since 2006/2007 (G14, A14 currently). Already on the 15-goal mark, Loïs Openda has been on fire on the road lately, netting four of Lens’ last five away league goals and he hit the decisive goal in the reverse H2H.
⚡ Hot stat: PSG have scored in both halves in 18 of their 30 Ligue 1 games this season, a league-high.
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