St Etienne – Marseille Preview

Long gone are the days when St Etienne where ravaging all defenses in Ligue1 thanks to strikers Brandao and Aubameyang.

Nowadays Erdinc and van Wolfswinkel barely touch the ball and somehow manage to miss the few chances fellow midfielders struggle to create.

The lack of a truly skilled striker with killer instincts is by far St Etienne’s major problem. There is an incredible amount of talent in St Etienne’s squad, but unfortunately because they lack a world class striker other players can’t achieve full potential.

Furthermore coach Galtier keeps on rotating players preventing them picking form and even confidence.

Marseille conceded again last round, twice this time (2-2 against Reims). There is a party in the city every-time Marseille keeps a clean sheet but unfortunately for the residents it happened only once since the season resumed.

Most likely things will worsen since coach Bielsa is keen on giving his compatriot Ocampos a place in the lineup. Bielsa can’t leave Payet, Thauvin or Ayew on the bench as they are exponential players and so he simply removes a defensive minded player. Last round it was central midfielder Romao who was substituted at half time. This can have disastrous consequences especially since at Marseille’s fullbacks often advance and leave many open spaces.

In many games until the end of the season 22 years old Imbula will be the only one providing a helping hand for the two central defenders.

Marseille won’t stop conceding and should always be considered for betting on goals, but not when up against teams like St Etienne with wasteful Erdinc and van Wolfswinkel upfront.

UPDATE: Hosts will welcome back defenders Clerc and Bayal Sall, winger Monnet-Paquet and midfielder Clément.

St Etienne: Ruffier, Moulin – Brison, L.Perrin, Tabanou, Théophile-Catherine, Clerc, Bayal Sall – Lemoine, Nguemo, Clément, Diomandé – Hamouma, Erding, Mollo, Van Wolfswinkel, Gradel, Monnet-Paquet

Marseille: S.Mandanda, B.Samba – Aloé, B.Dja Djedje, Fanni, Ben.Mendy, J.Morel, Sparagna – Alessandrini, Imbula, Ocampos, Romao, Thauvin, Tuiloma – A.Ayew, Batshuayi, Gignac, Omrani, Payet

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