Strasbourg v Toulouse – La Meinaub at 19:00
Chasing a fourth Ligue 1 win in six, Strasbourg were happy to depart Guingamp last weekend with a share of the spoils. Le Racing were behind inside the opening 10 minutes and second-best for large swathes of the encounter before Kenny Lala missed a penalty and substitute Kevin Zohi scored a late leveller.
Former Newcastle goalkeeper Matz Sels had to be in fine form between the sticks, whilst the Bretons missed what looked an unmissable chance with only six minutes on the clock. Strasbourg head coach Thierry Laurey admitted his side had rode their luck but preferred to focus on the positives post-match.
The famous Alsace club disappeared to the amateur leagues after the 2011 season but have impressively bounced back, clinching successive league titles before ensuring their top-flight status in 2017/18, even if it was by just a single point. Strasbourg have also done it in an entertaining fashion.
Home is where the heart is
Laurey’s troops are far from watertight at the back but make up for their deficiencies with an enterprising attacking game, particularly at their atmospheric Stade de la Meinau home. Monaco, Dijon, and Amiens have been seen off here already this season with Le Racing scoring three times in each.
During their return to Ligue 1, Strasbourg recorded W7-D6-L6 here, beating the likes of PSG and Lyon along the way. Knowing their preferred front-foot approach is at their best when playing in front of their loyal supporters, I’m happy to back the hosts here with a -0.50 Asian Handicap start at 2.00.
The hosts have only been beaten on three occasions this term, scoring twice or more in seven encounters already. Only PSG, Marseille and Lyon are averaging more goals-per-game than Strasbourg and their effervescent attack should cause visitors Toulouse plenty of problems on Saturday night.
Away day misery for Toulouse
Toulouse survived by the skin of their teeth the last term in the relegation play-off. Mickael Debeve kept them up but Alain Casanova has taken over after leading Lens in 2017/18. Following an initially eye-catching opening to the campaign (W3-D0-L1), Les Pitchouns are now winless in seven (W0-D4-L3).
Last weekend’s 3-0 reverse at home to Montpellier was kinder than the final score suggested and in eight of their 11 outings thus far the visitors have failed to score more than a solitary strike, whilst only twice managing to keep their sheets clean under Casanova’s watch.
Since the start of last season, Toulouse have W3-D7-L14 on their travels and are therefore easily opposed when they take the trip to Strasbourg on Saturday.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: Strasbourg -0.50 at 2.000
Preview by: @MarkOHaire.