Reims were pretty unlucky to get only 1 point last round against St Etienne. The taste is even more bitter as the equalizer came in the dying seconds of the game (finished 2-2).
Reims were very organized and it was clearly visible that not having any pressure upon their shoulders increased the level of inventiveness.
Fullbacks made an excellent game, as one of them scored and the other provided an assist. Winger Diego played his first game after a long period of injury. He wasn’t able to make any difference but hopefully he will pick up a rythm and will become a key element again.
The performance is even more praiseworthy as Reims were without central midfielder Krychowiak (probably their best player) who was out suspended. He will return for this game.
But it’s not all milk and honey for Reims. For example they have problems defending against long balls inside the box, because players have bad positioning and poor marking skills. In-fact this is why they conceded the late equalizer last round.
Opponents Sochaux made a solid game last week against Toulouse (won 2-0). The game was totally one sided with Sochaux in charge from begging until end.
The attacking phase was one of the most impressive aspects of Sochaux’s game. Striker Jordan Ayew showed big playing appetite, scored a goal and delivered an assist.
Wingers Contout and Corchia were also very active, initiated many actions and had no problems in outplaying opponents.
Despite Reims not being able to win for 6 rounds both sides are in confidence at the moment. Bookies give us a clear favorite for this encounter, but due to the high levels of organization in both camps, the game will be much more balanced then the odds suggest.
UPDATE: Reims will be without fullback Signorino and central defender Tacalfred
Reims: Agassa, Placide – Weber, Conte, Mandi, Turan, MFulu – Albaek, Oniangue, Diego, Fortes, Devaux, Krychowiak, Ayite – Atar, De Preville, Charbonnier, Courtet.
Sochaux: .Pelé, Pouplin – Faussurier, Carlão, L.Zouma, C.Kanté, Marange, Corchia, Sunzu – Prcic, Ilaimaharitra, Contout, Sinkala, Boukari, Roudet, Guerbert – J.Ayew, Mayuka, Bakambu