Besides Nantes’ fans I don’t think anybody would have minded if Reims would have won last round (0-0 away at Nantes).
It was a game moderately dominated by Reims, a game in which they imposed the rythm.
[restrict paid=true level=1] Reims’ coach Fournier can be a bit weird sometimes. Last round he decided all of a sudden to start with Courtet upfront, when everyone expected to see either Charbonnier or De Preville. Well, to be honest, it’s not that big of a difference (only De Preville may be a bit more talented) but it prevents all forwards from picking up some rythm. There is no continuity upfront for Reims. This may actually be Reims’ biggest problem.
In these conditions wingers are the ones standing out, and especially Fortes on the right flank. He is very active in 2014 and Reims rely a lot on his actions.
In defense everything looks great. Starting with the 3 central midfielders that destroy almost everything opponents create.
In comparison to last round Reims will be without defender Signorino, while fullback Mandi and winger Atar are doubtful.
Many of you following Ligue1 expected Montpellier to win last round against a depleted Nice (Montpellier won 3-1). Contrary to the 2 goals difference, around min 70 Montpellier were in troubles as Nice were pushing hard for the equalizer. If it would have been a different opponent there would have been good chances for a draw, as Montpellier looked exhausted.
Upfront they played with opportunities and one by one Mounier, Niang and Montano missed incredible chances. The offensive fragility was a major problem for Montpellier in the 1st part of the season, and even if they are scoring goals now, the issue is far from being solved. The real test will come now against Reims who have a solid defense.
Important midfielder Sanson will miss due to injury. There is a high possibility that by Saturday key player Cabella will transfer out to Newcastle. The talks intensified recently and Friday we should know for sure (the transfer window will close). Thiw will be a huge blow for Montpellier, as the offensive potential will severely diminish. I will update on Cabella’s transfer.
For Montepellier central defender El Kaoutari is once again doubtful.
Reims are very organized and lucid in the defensive phase, and all their opponents have huge troubles in finding any open spaces. It is true Reims are kind of soft upfront, but they are able to apply constant pressure, especially on home ground, pressure that can destabilize many defenses.
Reims DNB at price of 1.83 with low to medium confidence.
UPDATE: Central defender Weber also got injured for Reims. Lower stakes [/restrict]