France Ligue 2 – Troyes v Le Havre Preview (27/1/17)

Troyes preview

  • ESTAC were *the* form team back in the autumn but a run of 4 losses in 5 games has sunk them down the table a bit. They didn’t start 2017 playing too badly, but lost a couple of tight encounters.
  • Jean Louis Garcia’s men have the second best home record in the league with excellent 6-3-2 statistics. The defeat to Ajaccio a couple of weeks ago was their first here since the opening day, but has to be classed as unfortunate.
  • Right back Charles Traore and box to box midfielder Karim Azamoum are both ruled out, but nobody else of significance is an absentee.

Le Havre preview

  • Woes continue for Le Havre and they are now winless in seven games following a disappointing defeat at home to GFCA last week.
  • Coach Oswald Tanchot is under a lot of pressure. This is a team with high expectations and one of the best squads in the entire division. They should be doing much better.
  • Squad condition is excellent again with only midfielder Jean Pascal Fontaine ruled out. Le Havre have been close to full health during their bad run which makes their poor form even more mystifying.
  • HAC possess the fourth best away record and they definitely prefer playing away from home. However, just 1 of their last 5 ended in victory.

Conclusion & betting analysis

  • Le Havre continue to absolutely befuddle me! On paper, their squad is one of the top three in Ligue 2 and they should be right up there challenging for promotion. I have no idea what is going wrong, there seems no logical explanation.
  • The players simply have not performed. How long will this continue? That’s the big question that needs to be answered. Sooner or later you’d think HAC rebound, but there’s been very little sign of it.
  • I think Troyes will win this match and I’m going to back them on a -0.25 handicap. They have lost 4 of their last 5 but most of them have been against good teams and away from home.
  • Here in front of their own fans they possess an excellent record and are difficult to beat. Odds around the 1.90 mark on this handicap are good enough to me.
  • It’s not just results that are worrying for Le Havre, but performances too. I can’t ignore this any longer. Something really isn’t right at the club and I have to take them on tonight.
  • This will probably be a tight, lower scoring encounter and I would side with under 2.25 rather than the overs if I had to take a choice.

Prediction: 1-0

Recommended bet 1 unit: Troyes -0.25 @ 1.93 (minimum odds acceptable 1.80)