• Friday, 13 August 2010

    Ligue 1 round 2 previews

    Brest v Auxerre
    Valenciennes v Marseille
    Nancy v Rennes
    Monaco v Montpellier
    St Etienne v Sochaux
    Lorient v Nice
    Arles v Lens
    Bordeaux v Toulouse
    Caen v Lyon
    Lille v PSG

    Top game this week is the derby match between Lille and PSG. Unfortunately and rather inevitably, PSG's season opener was marred by crowd trouble, the fans picking up where they left off last season. It still seems to be among themselves rather than involving opposition fans, a throwback to the club segregating the crowd, partially along racial grounds, back in the 1970s. Hopefully this one will pass of peacefully and the football can once again be the talking point. PSG were impressive last week and Guillaume Hoarau made his international debut in midweek on the back of his performance. Lille were held to a draw last week, but have too many good players for it to be a real problem.

    Elsewhere, Bordeaux v Toulouse looks a cracker. Les Violets were good against Brest last week, but this will show us whether that was Brest being poor or TFC are genuine contenders this time around. Bordeaux need to kick out of their slump quickly. It stretches back to last season and we all thought a new face in charge may give them the lift they needed, but Jean Tigana's men were undone in Montpellier a week ago. Yoan Gourcuff in particular looks like he needs a lift. If he fires, they'll be fine, but he's been a passenger for too long now. Bordeaux's conquerors from last week, Montpellier, go to the Principality this time and look good for another three points. Difficult second season? They're not having it down on the south coast. Caen come off the back of beating Marseille by going head-to-head with title favourites Lyon this time. It doesn't get much of a tougher start for the Normans, but if they did the champions, why not Lyon, especially at home? Marseille look to get back to winning ways at Valenciennes where they ought not to have too many problems.

    Sochaux got off to a winning start over a gutsy Arles side last week and face St Etienne this week, both sides keen for early points in order not to be dragged into a relegation battle. Arles take on Lens as they seek their first points of the season and Brest are at home to Auxerre. Strikers are in demand and Loic Remy had a lot of scouts looking at him at the Norway game. He'll line up for Nice against Lorient this week while Rennes, whose World Cup star Asamoah Gyan looks set to move to Sunderland, are at Nancy.

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