France’s top-flight is facing a quick turnaround after midweek action and moving to matchday 8 on the weekend with a slew of intriguing matchups to spot.
In this column, we highlight some of the best matchups on the weekend’s soccer betting card and provide predictions and soccer picks for your consideration. So, without too much preamble, let’s get started.
OGC Nice vs. AS Saint-Etienne
Saturday, September 25, 2021 – 11:00 AM EDT at Geoffroy-Guichard Stadium
Nice suffered a setback in midweek action behind a 1-0 loss to Lorient on the away. The loss followed a 2-2 draw with AS Monaco at the weekend and marked the second straight fixture in which Nice drops points. As a result, Nice slipped from fourth place in Ligue 1 to seventh behind a 3-2-1 mark and 10 points.
Nice had been playing some good football up to matchday 7. They’d beaten Lille (4-0), Bordeaux (4-0), and Nantes (2-0) before settling on a 2-2 draw to AS Monaco. More importantly, they’d played solid in front of goal and kept three clean sheets until Monaco tucked a couple past Walter Daniel Benitez.
In fact, Nice was leading 2-1 over Monaco, after coming from behind in the second half. However, Monaco’s Ben Yiddler was awarded a penalty kick and he didn’t miss. Giving Monaco a crucial point from the ensuing 2-2 draw.
Next up for Nice is a potential rebound fixture against the struggling St. Etienne on the away. The hosts are stuck in the league’s basement with a 0-3-4 mark and three points. St. Etienne is still seeking its first win of the season. Most recently, St Etienne was crushed by Monaco 3-1.
Books tip Nice at +130 to clinch the win at the expense of the hapless St. Etienne. Les Aiglons are in the value spot here and should come through for bettors against a much weaker side.
FC Lorient vs. Olympique Lyonnais
Saturday, September 25, 2021 - 03:00 PM EDT at Venue Groupama Stadium
Lyon and Lorient set up an intriguing top-of-the-table clash in Ligue 1. Lorient ranks sixth in the table with a 3-3-1 mark and 12 points while Lyon ranks seventh in the table with a 3-2-1 mark and 11 points. Lyon is in good form coming into the weekend’s round of top-flight French football. They’ve won three of their last four fixtures, including a midweek 3-1 decision over Troyes.
The only hiccup in their fine run of form was a 2-1 loss to PSG on matchday 6 at the Parc des Princes. Across all competitions, Lyon is 6-2-2 in its last ten fixtures. Lorient is coming off an important 1-0 win over Nice on Wednesday, extending their undefeated run of form to four straight fixtures.
This includes a 2-2 draw with Lens and a scoreless draw with Reims and wins over Lille (2-1) and Nice (1-0). This is a tough fixture to predict. Both teams will be eager to avoid dropping all points while applying pressure at the same time to their nearest challengers in the table. As such, there’s a strong possibility for a draw in this matchup, especially as both sides will
Angers SCO vs. ESTAC Troyes
Sunday, September 26, 2021 - 09:00 AM EDT at Stade de l'Aube
Anger has surged in the Ligue 1 table in recent weeks. Currently sitting pretty in third place, the Anger sport a 3-3-1 record and 12 points. Merely two points separate Anger and second-placed Marseille (4,2-0, 14 points) in the table. Angers is in a three-way tie with Lorient and Lens, so any missteps will come at a premium.
League-leading PSG (7-0-0, 21 points) is undefeated through the first seven rounds of France’s top-flight league action. They’ve pulled so far ahead of the rest, catching up to them is practically unthinkable. This means that the rest of the field is likely to contend with battles for the remaining top spots in the table that deliver European action to boot.
Angers is in the mix right now. And most recently, they squared up to Marseille in a battle of Ligue 1 contenders. The result was a scoreless draw. Next up for Anger is a much easier matchup against Troyes.
The bottom-dwelling side is currently sitting in 17th place, but only a point separates Troyes from the drop zone. They’re 1-2-4 through seven fixtures with 5 points. Troyes held Montpellier to a 1-1 draw and then they succumbed to a 3-1 loss to Lyon.
The soccer betting market is surprisingly tight between these two sides, suggesting a draw might be the likeliest outcome. And at the tempting price of +230 or thereabouts depending on the choice top sportsbook, it’s a value bet to consider. However, Anger should bag the three points in this fixture in order to stay abreast of the race for second place.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.