France Ligue 2 – Valenciennes v Brest Preview (27/1/17)

Valenciennes preview

  • The northern outfit are unbeaten in seven games. Quite a lot of those encounters have ended draws (5) but this is a solid run from VA in which they are hard to beat.
  • They are situated fairly comfortably in midtable, but yet again a high number of draws is starting to cost them, just like it did last season. Nearly half (10) of their fixtures have now ended all square.
  • Key left wing back Saliou Ciss is still on African Nations Cup duty. In attack, leading scorer Nuno da Costa is injured, although had only scored one goal in their last six games anyway.

Brest preview

  • Lost at home to Red Star (0-1) on Monday night, somehow failing to score during the encounter. Brest are still top of the table but missed out on a huge chance to extend their advantage.
  • Key defender Luciano Castan is suspended along with playmaker Bruno Grougi. Nobody else of significance is ruled out.
  • Brest have the second best away record in the league, only losing once all season. Their excellent 5-4-1 stats with only 8 goals conceded in 10 games is a very solid return.

Conclusion & betting analysis

  • I don’t think Brest are as good as their league position suggests. But they have to be respected and have a knack of getting good results, especially away from home.
  • They were unlucky not to equalise on Monday night and I wouldn’t be surprised if they rebounded here. It won’t be easy to beat Valenciennes however.
  • The hosts rarely lose these days and seem more solid at the moment. There was a period when their defence was far too weak and conceding all the time, but things have improved in that department.
  • This match really has a strong feel of a draw about it. VA are no strangers to all square games and Brest don’t often lose on the road. Something like a 1-1 outcome is the most likely outcome.
  • Valenciennes aren't a bad price on a DNB handicap and some would argue they are a spot of value. I don’t see any real point in betting against Brest though when the chances of actually winning are quite low.
  • The goal line between 2 and 2.25 seems spot on and I’m happy to avoid betting on this game.

Prediction: 1-1

Recommended bet: None