France Ligue 1 – Angers v St Etienne Preview (27/11/16)

Angers preview

  • The hosts have produced a mixed bag of results recently but have been fairly hard to beat. They did well to come from 0-1 down to draw at Rennes last week, despite only having 10 men for over 30 mins.
  • Two key players are suspended today. Centre back Romain Thomas and midfielder Cheikh N’Doye both miss out. The latter is especially a big miss, he's the driving force behind this team and such a pure beast in the middle of the park.
  • Angers haven’t lost at home since early August and can be awkward opposition in front of their own fans. They don’t make too many mistakes and are usually hard to penetrate here.

St Etienne preview

  • Les Verts have struggled for wins this year and that’s why they are stuck in midtable. Nearly half of their fixtures have ended draws.
  • They have at least qualified for the knockout round of the Europa League and done well in this competition again. They battled out a tough 0-0 against German side Mainz in midweek so it’s possible Christophe Galtier’s men could be affected both physically and mentally.
  • Saint wouldn’t be Sainte without some sort of injury problems! The good news is the defence and midfield are mostly in tact. However, in the final third the likes of Monnet Paquet, Soderlund & Beric all miss out, whilst Romain Hamouma is still doubtful.

Conclusion & betting analysis

  • Playing the early Sunday kick off just a few days after a tough Europa League match is hardly ideal for Sainte. There’s a good chance they could be flat here so it could be an opportunity for Angers to take advantage.
  • However, without two key players they themselves are weakened. The loss of N’Doye in the middle of the park is especially brutal. He has such a strong engine and is highly influential.
  • Angers are a- 0.25 favourite and this is about fair. They are the most likely victor here, although perhaps the most probable outcome is a draw.
  • Both sides have been involved in a lot of under 2.5 games this year and something similar is expected again. Chances should be at a premium and one goal either way would probably be enough to secure all three points.
  • Nothing really interests me here. I don’t expect much of a classic and neither do the bookies considering the goal line is set between 1.75 and 2.0. For me, this is a clear no bet affair.

Prediction: 0-0

Recommended bet: None