Reims conceded only once last round away at Lyon but they were outplayed for the entire 90 minutes feom all points of view.
Defensively they struggled to keep up with opponents and midfielders needed to provide constant support. It was a miracle they were still able to walk when the game finished considering all the efforts they made.
The defensive potential will be a bit diminished this round seeing that Reims will have to do without fullback Traore and central midfielder Kankava.
Offensively Reims weren’t any better and wingers Bulot and De Preville were unable to take advantage of the open spaces on the flanks.
Still, Reims is a totally different team when playing on home ground, and one poor performance away from home doesn’t make a rule.
Excellent display from Caen last round against St Etienne (Caen won 1-0). Caen focused mostly on killing the game somewhere in own half and striking on counters.
This tactic paid off and by the way Caen looked this strategy could also work in-front of most Ligue1 opponents. Chemistry improved considerably and the attacking trio Bessat – Delort – Rodelin is looking better with each round.
As long as opponents aren’t applying constant pressure and once in a while Caen are able to push the game forward, the defense has enough endurance power to resist. Keeper Vercoutre is also in excellent form and opponents have difficulties finding the net even in one on one plays.
It’s very difficult to anticipate how this game will develop but if Caen will apply their usual strategy then Reims will simply be invited to attack. The problem is Reims are very powerful on home soil this season and Caen needs to master the counter attack technique otherwise will backfire.
UPDATE: Reims will once again miss defender Mandi. Caen will miss defender Imorou who suffered an injury
Reims: Agassa, Placide – Fofana, Mfulu, Signorino, Tacalfred – Bulot, Devaux, Fortes, Oniangue, Peuget, Rigonato, H.Rodriguez – Charbonnier, De Preville, Kyei, Ngog, Siebatcheu
Caen: Vercoutre, Reulet – Appiah, Alhadhur, Yahia, Da Silva, Ben Youssef, Raineau – Seube, Adéoti, Leborgne, Féret (cap), Bessat – Louis, Delort, Bazile, Rodelin, Ntibazonkiza