France Ligue 1 – Monaco v Metz Preview (11/2/17)

Monaco preview

  • PSG’s win last night means than Monaco need to pick up three points today in order to maintain their three point gap at the top of the table.
  • The free scoring hosts have a great 10-1-1 record here at Le Stade Louis II, netting a remarkable 41 times in front of their own fans!
  • Most of their wins at this stadium have been by a comfortable margin and most people will expect them to win easily again today, it’s all about staying focused.
  • Monaco will have to do without two defenders. Jemerson is suspended and Djibril Sidibe is injured. Neither will be missed much from a defensive sense because Metz are unlikely to threaten much. However, Sidibe’s attacking threat on the wings could be missed.

Metz preview

  • Les Grenats have suddenly found some form. They’ve won 3 out of 4 matches and lost just 1 of their last 6. The game that resulted in a loss was when they were reduced to 9 men.
  • Philippe Hinchberger’s men have earnt themselves a nice little three point gap ahead of the relegation zone and have a game in hand against Lyon up their sleeve as well. Morale is probably the highest it’s been all season and there is belief in the camp.
  • Veteran centre back Milan Bisevac is injured, along with winger Kevin Lejeune who is yet again on the treatment table. Midfielder Cheick Doukoure has been given some time to recover following a long African Nations Cup stint. Everyone else that matters is available for selection.
  • Surprisingly, Metz have the eight best away record in Ligue 1 but have lost 4 of their last 5 on the road, scoring just one goal in the process.

Conclusion & betting analysis

  • Monaco are the clear favourites here and should register a fairly easy victory. Metz aren’t in bad form but Monaco are way above their level and it’s difficult to see how Metz can stay close.
  • The hosts thrashed title rivals Nice 3-0 here last week and managed to overcome a stubborn defence. A similar sort of test is expected here, except Metz aren’t as strong at the back so should be easier to penetrate.
  • There are three potential handicaps to back here all of which require Monaco to win by at least two goals in order not to lose.
  • Ultimately, I’ve decided to back the hosts on a -1.75 line. For this bet to fully win then I need Monaco to win by three or more goals, but this certainly isn’t beyond them. Even a two goal win would result in a profit of some kind.
  • The goal line is placed between 3.25 and 3.5 which is understandable, but maybe too high. I prefer taking the handicap because a 3-0 or 2-0 Monaco win would result in a profit.
  • Metz might score, but even if they do then I would still expect Monaco to win by at least two clear goals. The gulf in class is too much and they should dominate from start to finish.

Prediction: 3-0

Recommended bet 1 unit: Monaco -1.75 @ 1.86 (minimum odds acceptable 1.70)