Coach Dupraz took everyone by surprise and left key player Wass on the bench last round. There’s only one possible reason for this decision: to give midfielder Wass some resting time ahead of the first Ligue1 midweek round.
But Wass or no Wass, Evian are simply going from bad to worse. Last round at Bordeaux they were under pressure for most of the game and they managed to score only because of a lucky deflection after Bordeaux got too relaxed (Bordeaux won 2-1).
Their defensive phase is by far the worst in Ligue1 and they have a hard time both on the wings and in the center. Central defender Angoula fulfilled his suspension but will miss again due to injury, meaning that talentless Mongongu will continue to play in central defense.
Although they have 3 offensive minded midfielders Evian aren’t able to create dangerous opportunities from open play. Very rarely they threaten opponents with long range attempts.
Lens were quite unlucky to lose last round on home ground against St Etienne (1-0). Especially in the first half Lens dominated and had the best of chances. Their play on the flanks was exemplary and even solid and well organized St Etienne found themselves in deep troubles.
In the defensive phase they easily switch from 4-3-3 to 4-5-1 agglomerating the midfield, creating numerical superiority and preventing opponents from approaching the penalty box.
With Evian’s reduced creative power Lens won’t even need to mobilize at maximum in order to reject the incoming danger. Even if still early in the season Evian are getting desperate for points so Lens should have more spaces available to exploit. The key battles will definitely be carried on the flanks where Lens are clearly superior. Lens +0.25 at 2.05
UPDATE: Lens will once again miss winger Nomenjanahary due to injury.
Evian: Hansen, B.Leroy – Cambon, Mensah, Mongongu, Sabaly, Abdallah – Sorlin, Koné, Tejeda, Wass, Camus, Ninkovic, Barbosa – Sougou, Nsikulu, Bruno, Nielsen.
Lens: Belon, Ru.Riou – Ab.Ba, Baal, Cavaré, Gbamin, Kantari, Landre – Bourigeaud, Cyprien, El Jadeyaoui, Le Moigne, Valdivia – Chavarria, Ad.Coulibaly, Guillaume, D.Ndiaye, Touzghar