Angers v Lille – Stade Jean-Bouin at 19:00
Lille have been one of the early surprise packages in France this season. LOSC pocketed an impressive 3-0 triumph at home to Guingamp last Sunday with Jonathan Bamba scoring twice, a result that pushed Les Dogues up to seven points from an unbeaten three fixtures.
Head coach Christophe Galtier admitted, “I must be positive and what pleased me was the way started the game. Our victory was deserved and it was a positive afternoon.” But the Lille boss suggested he wasn’t happy with some of his side’s play as they left their wilting opposition off the hook.
Les Dogues were embroiled in a relegation battle last season but early signs suggest the current crop can at least table a cushy mid-table finish. Despite being early on in the campaign, Lille have posted an 86% Expected Goals from open play ratio – a divisional best in Ligue 1.
LOSC are giving up very few goalscoring opportunities and should the visitors be capable of sustaining their current form on Saturday, picking up a result away at Angers should be well within their capabilities. Indeed, backing Lille with a +0.25 start on the Asian Handicap line holds plenty of appeals.
Angers have followed up their disastrous late home loss to newcomers Nimes with back-to-back reverses to Rennes and PSG. It’s not been the easiest of schedules for the hosts but even so, Les Scoïstes have offered supporters little encouragement in defeat.
Last weekend Angers did manage a goal against PSG at the Parc des Princes but the defending champions were fielding a new-look formation and obvious growing pains followed. The all-conquering Parisians used Angel Di Maria as a wing-back and Marquinhos at the base of midfield so taking advantage wasn’t too tricky for the underdogs.
More concerning for Stephane Moulin’s men is their inability to pick up maximum points at their Stade Raymond Kopa base. Les Scoïstes recorded only five victories here last season, making it only 13 wins from their past 40 outings as hosts in Ligue 1.
Such form is concerning for a club that’s punching above its weight and therefore makes Angers easily opposable on Saturday night.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Lille 0.25 at 1.820
Preview by: @MarkOHaire.
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