France Ligue 2 – Amiens v Nimes Preview (3/2/17)

Amiens preview

  • A stunning late come from behind victory against local rivals Lens last week (2-1) has got them back on track. Remarkably, against all odds Amiens are situated third in the table after 22 games.
  • This is a tremendous achievement for a team tipped to finish rock bottom this season. In terms of squad quality and overall resources they're punching far above their weight.
  • However, Amiens have to be treated seriously now, anyone who doesn’t is liable to get burnt. Their home record is pretty strong (5-4-2) and not many sides have managed to beat them at Le Stade de la Licorne this season.
  • Squad condition is near perfect with their only injuries to long term casualties. New signing from Lille, Junior Tallo (attacker) is included in the squad tonight and could make his debut at some stage.

Nimes preview

  • For a team missing so many players, Les Crocos have to be delighted with their January. Bernard Blaquart’s men remained unbeaten, picking up five points from three games.
  • It was a surprise that they were able to score five goals during this period too. Key striker Rachid Alioui, and crucial winger Christian Kouakou both missed every single fixture. It’s a massive boost that this duo return for tonight’s match.
  • Midfielder Larry Azouni also returns from African Nations Cup duty. They’ve missed his presence in the middle of the park.
  • First choice keeper Gauthier Gallon is injured and will be missing some significant time due a broken foot. This means Yan Marillat will keep goal, he has generally looked ok. Nimes signed Martin Sourzac this week for competition.
  • Les Crocos have the second best away record in the league (6-2-3) and have to be greatly respected on the road.

Conclusion & betting analysis

  • Amiens have long been underrated for most of the season with the bookies. However, on this occasion it looks like they are slightly overrated here, only just above the 2.0 mark to win.
  • Nimes are a very good away side and possess some really fast attackers, which makes them extra dangerous on the counter attack. It wouldn't surprise me if they drew or won this fixture.
  • Amiens also deserve respect though. They aren’t third in the table for no reason and have an ability to score goals at the right time, last week being a fine example.
  • I personally think this will be an open contest and over 2.25 goals caught my eye. Amiens have been involved in some higher scoring contests recently, whilst Nimes are a natural over team anyway.
  • The price isn't that great though, around the 1.81 mark. Amiens do have the potential to defend well if their minds are focused and their coach is quite clever, so I could see the hosts sitting deeper.
  • If this was an over 2 goal line at reasonable odds, then I would probably back it, but on this occasion I’m willing to refuse the bet based on poor value.

Prediction: 2-2

Recommended bet: None