Nice made a disappointing game last week away at Monaco (lost 3-0). In defense they were easily outplayed, and especially on the flanks Nice were clearly inferior.
They still managed to create few decent scoring chances, but weren’t lucky enough to find the net.
At the moment Nice is far from the performances in the first part of the season, and in this rhythm there won’t be any Champions League football next year.
Hosts will have to do without midfielders Sarr and Koziello who are suspended.
St Etienne started in force last week against Lyon, scored twice in only 20 minutes, and then successfully changed tactics and focus mostly on preserving the result (won 2-0).
Wingers Hamouma and Monnet-Pacquet scored a goal each, and at the moment they are by far the most in-form players in the squad. In these conditions it’s no wonder St Etienne build mostly down the flanks.
From this point of view they will have a major advantage over Nice, who are very vulnerable defending the flanks.
Guests will miss defender Malcuit who is suspended.
When 2017 started Nice struggled with absences. They missed forward Balotelli and key midfielders Belhanda and Seri. Now all of them are back, but there was no visible improvement last week against a powerful opponent. St Etienne are in good form at the moment, have plenty of value in the squad, and their wingers can successfully exploit Nice’s weaknesses. ST ETIENNE +0.50 at 1.85
See all the Ligue 1 Betting Tips for this round
Nice: Cardinale, Benitez – Souquet, Baysse, Burner, Le Marchand, Dalbert, Dante – Belhanda, Seri, Eysseric, Walter, Obbadi, Cyprien, Marcel – Balotelli, Srarfi, Plea, Donis
St Etienne: Maisonnial, Moulin – Théophile-Catherine, Polomat, Lacroix, Pogba, Perrin, Pierre-Gabriel – Pajot, Saivet, Veretout, Selnaes, Lemoine, Maiga -Roux, Hamouma, Monnet-Paquet, Soderlund, Jorginho, Keyta.