France Ligue 1 – Marseille v Lorient Preview (26/8/16)

OM-FCL

Marseille preview

OM continued their poor start to the season when they lost 1-2 away against Guingamp. Truth be told they were second best and deserved nothing out of the game. That loss followed up an opening day draw with Toulouse here at the Velodrome (0-0). This is certainly a club which isn’t very rosy at the moment with all sorts of on and off the field issues. Big rumours this week were that they were going to get a new owner and ex boss Marcelo Bielsa take over again. But this might be a pipe dream for fans and Marseille needs to prepare themselves for a season of midtable mediocrity. New left back Henri Bedimo is still injured, whilst midfielder Abou Diaby (surprise surprise) is on the treatment table again. OM have a terrible recent record at this stadium and the fans often get on their backs if things start badly.

Lorient preview

Les Merlus are arguably more in crisis! Certainly at least on the field. They've lost both of their matches, already received three red cards and head into this match having conceded six goals without reply. Last week was a real bloodbath with key central midfielder Didier Ndong sent off in the first half, followed by striker Benjamin Jeannot. The latter stupidly pushed over the referee and could be suspended for up to 6 months! Lorient need to keep their discipline and I personally have doubts over coach Sylvain Ripoll. FCL have had massive defensive issues ever since he took over and they are never a very solid team. His tactics are certainly a big factor towards this, although on the flip side at least they usually retain a strong presence going forwards.

Conclusion & betting analysis

This looks set to be a really interesting match. Marseille have terrible problems winning at home but if they can’t beat Lorient tonight then they have some issues. FCL are a poor road team, are in a real mess and have all sorts of black clouds overhanging them right now. I think this will be an open game of football. OM are always expected to attack in front of their own fans, whilst I’m sure Lorient will offer a strong counter attacking threat. They actually have a good recent record in this fixture, winning in 2 of their last 3 visits to the Velodrome. This is because of their positive attitude and a willingness to exploit Marseille holes at the back. I think the hosts will get three points tonight but there’s no way I can back them @ 1.80. That would be silly when you consider their recent home record. I will however have a bit of over 2.5 goals @ around the 1.95 mark. This should be an attacking fixture with both teams capable of contributing towards the bet.

Prediction: 3-1
Recommended bet 1 unit; Over 2.5 goals @ 1.97 (minimum odds acceptable 1.80)

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