St Etienne preview
- Suffered badly in midweek against Nantes despite picking up a 0-0 draw. Played nearly the whole match with 10 men and also endured a lot of injuries.
- The cupboard is nearly bare in defence with so many regular starters ruled out. The most notable casualties are Loic Perrin & Kevin Theophile Catherine.
- The midfield is also hit hard with both Henri Saivet and Fabien Lemoine unavailable.
- As a result, a number of young academy players have been moved into the squad.
- Don’t underestimate this Sainte team though who are very resilient, well coached and unbeaten in five games.
- Les Dogues are now bottom of Ligue 1 after losing 4 of their first 6 games and winning just once.
- Difficult to know exactly what the problem is. There seems to be no excuses except for the fact they aren’t playing very well.
- Squad in very good condition health wise ahead of this game with only midfielder Mounir Obbadi ruled out.
- The ability is there on paper, Lille just need to string together a complete performance in all aspects.
Conclusion & betting analysis
- St Etienne are the better team right now but have many things going against them here. Fitness, fatigue, injuries, suspensions.
- Lille have even had an extra day of rest and should be much fresher heading into the contest.
- St Etienne are in between a DNB & -0.25 handicap which is much bigger than what they’d normally be without their absences.
- With the hosts missing so many defenders, the temptation is to back over 2 goals. But statistically Les Verts are an under machine recently and Lille could keep it tight.
- Logic suggests the visitors have a good chance of winning, but can they be trusted?
- I have a feeling the recent run of fixtures is going to be too much for St Etienne and Lille get three points. But they simply can’t be trusted so I’ll leave it alone.
Recommended bet: None