It is no surprise anymore to see Lille struggle in the attacking phase. Last round they conceded very early in the game and in-spite holding possession and pushing the game forward Lille simply couldn’t break opponents’ defense and ended up losing 1-0.
Lille netted only twice so far this season (8 rounds passed), both goals scored by attacking midfielder Boufal who suffered an injury in the midweek game and may sit out. Forward Tallo was also forced out due to an injury and is doubtful for this game.
Most players in the attacking phase are newly transferred so chemistry is a bit low at the moment. Coach Renard is also responsible for Lille’s unproductive game style as fullbacks are maybe the most talented players in the squad but aren’t given enough freedom.
Montpellier finally got their first Ligue1 win last week against Lorient (won 2-1). They didn’t really deserved to take all points seeing that opponents mildly dominated and created most of the real scoring opportunities. But in the end only results matter and this victory should be a confidence boost for Montpellier who had only 1 point prior to that game.
The biggest problem for Montpellier seems to be the inability to hold possession in midfield. Once in a while they push the pedal to the metal, but since there is no constant rythm midfielders always seem out-of-form.
Winger Berigaud is doubtful at the moment due to an injury.
It’s no rocket science to anticipate how this game will be played out. Once again Lille will be the ones holding possession and making efforts to push the game forward. The only problem is that their actions may end somewhere near the penalty box, like it always happened since the season started.
UPDATE: Lille will have to do without defenders Beria, Soumaro, Basa and midfielder Balmont. Montpellier will miss midfielders Saihi and Berigaud
Lille: Elana, Maignan – Corchia, D.Sidibé, Civelli, Pavard, Sunzu – Mavuba, S.Meïté, Amadou, Obbadi, Boufal, Bauthéac, Mar.Martin – Guillaume, Guirassy, Tallo, Benzia, Nangis
Montpellier: Pionnier, Bertaud – Congré, Hilton, Sotoca, Bensebaini, Deplagne, Roussillon – J.Marveaux, J.Martin, Boudebouz, Skhiri, Dabo, Lasne, W.Rémy – So.Camara, Cornette, Deza