Somehow Montpellier kept clean sheet last week away at Bordeaux (finished 0-0). Montpellier weren’t able to create a single goal scoring opportunity but they agglomerated in midfield and made life miserable for opponents.
Montpellier are third from the bottom at the moment and the poor performances are simply inexplicable given they have quite a talented squad.
Creative midfielder Martin was injured for a couple of rounds but recovered recently and is showing increased playing appetite. Hopefully his good form will also influence attacking midfielder Boudebouz who has been very disappointing since transferring-in.
On paper Montpellier have a really solid defense but unfortunately last round was only the 2nd game in which they kept a clean sheet.
They are also a bit unlucky as last week no less than three players suffered injuries and are doubtful for this game: fullback Roussillon and midfielders Lasne and Marveaux. The good news is that Montpellier welcome back Dabo and Bensebaini after suspension.
It is true they were up champions PSG but last round Bastia couldn’t even approach the penalty box, let alone get inside of it. Although they gathered 10 points so far Bastia are performing below Ligue1 standards, and not even a game against PSG can make them change attitude and approach.
They are very soft, easily lose possession, have no clear strategy, lack creativity and even will power. But worst of all is watching forward Brandao in action. He makes a simple pass look like rocket science and somehow manages to stop most of Bastia’s actions, like he’s playing for the opposition.
Sadly coach Printant doesn’t have the courage to say enough is enough, and even if Bastia lack alternatives, Printant could always promote a talented kid from the youth squad.
Keeper Leca is by far Bastia’s best player and without him they would simply be doomed.
Guests will welcome back defender Marange after he was suspended last week.
Montpellier aren’t scaring anyone this season, but a game against Bastia can be the perfect opportunity to win some form and confidence. They are definitely performing better and have more resources than Bastia. Montpellier -0.5 at 1.95
UPDATE: Montpellier welcome back forwards Camara and Yatabare after injury. Great news for Bastia as striker Brandao suffered an injury and will sit out.
MONTPELLIER: Pionnier, Bertaud – Skhiri, Congré, Hilton, Deplagne, Roussillon, M.Ndiaye – J.Martin, B.Dabo, Bensebaini, Boudebouz, W.Rémy – M.Yatabaré, Cornette, Deza, Ninga, So.Camara
BASTIA: Hansen, J-L.Leca – Palmieri, Modesto, Squillaci, Peybernes, Cioni, Marange – L.Coulibaly, Cahuzac, S.Fofana, Mostefa, Houri, Danic, Ngando, S.Diallo – F.Ayité, Raspentino