Five teams share the fifth place in Ligue 1 with 26 points, but Bordeaux and St Etienne have one game in hand. Regardless of the outcome of this match, one of them will break free and in case of a draw, they will tie Lorient for the forth place. The hosts are at full strength and could take advantage of the visitors’ injury ridden team to close the gap separating them from the leading pack.
Odds: Bet365 2.00
Bordeaux is now the only team in Ligue 1 that hasn’t lost the match at home, after Valenciennes bowed to PSG in midweek. Winning against St Etienne is vital as these two teams are also locked in a race for European competitions and the points earned now weigh twice as heavily. It is not going to be easy to overcome the visitors, which have lost a single game in the last three months but these days they are particularly vulnerable.
No less than five essential players are missing due to injuries or suspension, and the midfield has been particularly affected with Alonso, Nicolita and Diomande all sidelined. This unfortunate state of affairs will force coach Galtier to prepare a defensive minded team that will have a single striker, the goal getter Aubemayang. Bordeaux only needs to replace Obraniak and will start with Gouffran and Saivan upfront, inform strikers that should find their way to the goal at least once.
When the best defensive teams in Ligue 1 go head to head, the first instinct would be to bet on a low-scoring game, but in this case there is no value in the odds. Bordeaux has won nine of the 14 games played at home against St. Etienne and faces a team crippled by injuries. Bet365 prices home victory at 2.00 and even though a narrow margin victory is the most likely event, should be enough for punters to back the hosts.