Like it often happened recently Reims were again outplayed last round away at PSG. As expected, this time the domination was complete and not even from set pieces could Reims threaten the opponent.
Reims are very vulnerable at long balls from the flanks, now maybe more than ever as fullback Mandi scored 2 own goals last round and his confidence is at a minimum level.
Once again the 3 central midfielders were the heart and soul of the team. They tried to create the first line of defense, succeeded more or less, but didn’t had any energy left for the offensive phase. The main problem is that Reims will miss central midfielder Krychowiak who is suspended against St Etienne.
Krychowiak is maybe Reims’ best player, the one in charge with organizing the entire team.
St Etienne had a disappointing performance last round against Nice (drew 1-1). They were uninspired and soft both upfront and at the back.
They started again with 2 strikers, Brandao and Erdinc, but both of them were undecided in-front of goal and as a matter of fact St Etienne could only score from a penalty.
Wingers also made a poor game as the actions created on the sides and the number of balls inside the box were severely reduced in comparison to other games.
St Etienne will miss fullback Tremoulinas who is suspended. He only arrived at the club after the winter break so they have a proper replacement in Brison.
Regardless the bad performance last round St Etienne have the necessary skills to get back on the right track (catch 3rd place in Ligue1) against Reims who lack motivation, best player and have a demoralized defense (fullback Mandi). St Etienne to win at 2.20
UPDATE: Good news for St Etienne as attacking midfielder Corgnet is back from suspension.
Reims: Agassa, Placide – Weber, Mandi, M.Fofana, Turan, Tacalfred, Signorino – Albaek, Oniangue, Devaux, Fortes, F.Ayité, Diego – De Préville, Courtet, Charbonnier, Atar
St Etienne: Ruffier, Moulin, Valette – Perrin, Baysse, Sall, Brison, K.Zouma, Clerc – Cohade, Corgnet, Lemoine, Clément, Guilavogui, Diomandé – Tabanou, Erding, Brandao, Hamouma, Gradel