France Ligue 2 – Bourg-en-Bresse v Niort Preview (26/8/16)

BP-NIORT

Bourg-en-Bresse preview

Early indications suggest that Bourg-en-Bresse might be suffering a case of second season syndrome. They head into this match on the back of three straight losses and only have one point to their name so far. A lot of player changes during the summer haven't helped their cause and it was probably always going to take them a while to click. Last week they played fairly well at Ajaccio but still lost 1-3. Maybe the signs are that they are improving, but until a team actually wins then there’s always going to be elements of doubt in players’ minds. No new injuries to worry about although three guys are still ruled out who have yet to play a single minute this season, along with striker Lakdar Boussaha who misses his second straight game.

Niort preview

I had my concerns about Niort this season and so far they’ve doing nothing to change that view. Early results have been disappointing, highlighted by the horrendous 1-4 home loss to Tours last week. They were 4-0 down in next to no time against one of the poorer teams in the division and this is a huge worry for Niort fans. Prior to that they lost against newly promoted Amiens and the general feeling around the club is poor. Right back Tristan Lahaye is still injured, but the rest of the main starters should all be available. This is generally a poor looking group of players though and ability is limited.

Conclusion & betting analysis

Both these teams are out of form at the moment and are struggling. When two poor sides play each other then sometimes you can end up with a more open fixture than expected and I personally wouldn’t be surprised if this game ended over 2.5 goals. The goal line is generally priced around the 2.25 range though and it doesn’t really interest me. What does interest me is backing the hosts on a DNB handicap. Ideally, I wouldn't want to get involved in a game between two winless sides, but at the moment Niort are an outfit I’m happy to bet against. Their general performances have been really poor all season in all areas of the field. Bourg-en-Bresse have shown some signs in recent games of improvement - especially in the final third looking more dangerous. You can get 1.80 on the hosts DNB which I think is too big. Realistically, they should be on a -0.25 line around the same price so there’s no doubt of the value in this instance. Slightly dangerous bet backing a winless side, but the percentage play has to be Bourg-en-Bresse here.

Prediction: 2-1
Recommended bet 1 unit: Bourg-en-Bresse DNB @ 1.80 (minimum odds acceptable 1.65)

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