France Ligue 2 – Niort v Tours Preview (19/8/16)


Niort preview

Les Chamois have drawn 2 of their 3 games but not looked particularly good. They've only scored one goal and generally been second best in all of their matches. Losing 0-2 away at newly promoted Amiens last week would've been a blow to their confidence facing one of the worst sides in the ligue on paper. Niort themselves have to be classed as one of the poorest outfits though. You look on paper and they have low levels of quality, and are managed by a boss who won just a single match out of the first dozen last season with Paris FC. Denis Renaud will happily accept a draw in any fixture, but this is the sort of contest they need to be winning. Right back Tristan Lahaye is injured, but apart from that they are at full strength.

Tours preview

Just like Niort, Tours are another team who have started with 2 out of 3 draws but not really played well. Their one half good performance was at Lens (2-2), but they did face 10 men for a long time and actually conceded late to cost themselves a victory. They were totally outplayed by Strasbourg last week and only in the last 15 mins did they show any sort of life during the 1-3 loss. Tours simply haven't got going and don’t seem in the best state. At least key midfielder Haris Belkebla returns to the side tonight following Olympic duty. He could make a big difference because they've been overpowered in midfield in all contests so far. Tours need some sort of spark to get them going and they’ll hope he can provide it.

Conclusion & betting analysis

This looks set to be a low class contest between two out of form teams who aren't playing well. Confidence isn’t high and I think we’ll see a couple of sides afraid to lose. In actual fact both should be thinking the opposite because it’s a really winnable fixture for both, but I don’t expect anyone to take the bull by the horns. I personally think Niort are a bit too short here and I wouldn't be interested in them at their current price. Likewise though, Tours also have little appeal and this seems like a clear no bet match to me. With chances expected to be at a premium, it’s a huge 0-0 contender.

Prediction: 0-0
Recommended bet: None

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