While Ligue 1 has established itself among Europe’s “Big Five” divisions, it’s often earned the unfair and derogatory “farmers league” tag. It’s an arbitrary term, and one that might dissipate following the arrival of Lionel Messi in Paris. This article will take you through Ligue 1 betting tips and odds, as well as the most popular betting markets.
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The division has been hit hard financially by the pandemic, issues exacerbated by the recent TV rights crisis, but there’s hope that 2021/22 could signal the start of a turnaround with the greatest of all time leading the renaissance. Nevertheless, the French top tier is a popular option for many punters and its destined upturn in popularity this season will only attract more.
French Ligue 1 2021/2022 Odds & Tips
French Ligue 1 2021/22 Odds – Winner
|Paris Saint-Germain||1/10||Paddy Power|
* Odds are subject to change.
French Ligue 1 2021/22 Odds – Top Goalscorer
|Kylian Mbappe||7/4||Paddy Power|
|Wissam Ben Yedder||30/1||Unibet|
|Tino Kadewere||50/1||William Hill|
|Burak Yilmaz||50/1||William Hill|
|Ibrahima Niane||50/1||William Hill|
*Odds are subject to change.
Popular Ligue 1 Betting Markets
Whether a match or season-long wager, with a top league like the Ligue 1, there is no shortage of betting opportunities, especially if you bet with one of the best football betting sites that we've recommended on our site. Below are some exciting betting markets we've selected along with a few useful Ligue 1 betting tips.
To Win Outright Without PSG
PSG’s monopoly over Ligue 1 has meant the vast majority of bookies offer punters the chance to bet on the league winner without Les Parisiens. Therefore, if PSG finish top of the table and the team you back in this sort of bet finishes second, you’ll win. You can also back an outright victor, although PSG’s incredibly short odds mean there’s little value.
Top Goal Scorer
An exciting Ligue 1 season-long bet is a top goalscorer bet. If you’re high on a particular player or certain a new arrival will hit the ground running, you can back them to top the Ligue 1 scoring charts. If your selected player ends the season with the most goals in the competition, then your bet is a winner! Recent victors include Kylian Mbappé, Edinson Cavani and Zlatan Ibrahimović.
To Be Relegated
Three teams are relegated each season in Ligue 1. The two teams in the bottom two league positions go straight down, and the third from bottom enters a playoff game against a team from Ligue 2. You can make this sort of bet at any point during the season, although odds are at their highest before the season gets underway.
To Finish Top 3 Odds
The top three in Ligue 1 each garner a lucrative slot in the following season’s Champions League, with fourth spot earning a place in the Europa League. Thus, while those in the Premier League are used to hearing the phrase “top four race”, it’s very much a battle for the top three in France. Bookmakers offer the chance to bet on those who you think will finish in one of these coveted positions, and although the odds aren’t as high compared to the outright markets, generous payouts still manifest. For more appealing odds, you might fancy backing a dark horse, like Rennes in 2019/20.
Tournament Structure for the French Ligue 1
Ligue 1 comprises of 20 teams, each vying to become champions. There are 38 games in a season, played between mid-August and the following May, allowing each club to play every other club twice. One match will be at their home stadium, while the other will be away from home.
Three points are awarded for a victory, one point for a draw and nothing for a defeat. At the end of the season, the team in top slot are crowned the champions. The teams who finish in the top three all qualify for the following season’s Champions League, automatically boosting their revenue and giving them the chance to attract players from all over the continent. The team that finishes fourth enters the Europa League.
At the other end of the spectrum, those who finish in the bottom two are automatically relegated to the second tier, commonly known as Ligue 2. Meanwhile, the team that finishes 18th (third bottom), will compete in a two-legged playoff with Ligue 2’s third-placed team for a place in Ligue 1 the following season.
Ligue 1 outfits are given the chance to refresh their squads via the summer and winter transfer windows, with matches typically being played over the weekend. For those residing in the UK, the French top tier can be viewed on BT Sport.
France also has several domestic cups that accompany Ligue 1. The primary cup competition is the Coupe de France although teams will also compete in the Coupe de la Ligue (League Cup). The winners of Ligue 1 and the Coupe de France take part in the Trophee des Champions before the new season gets underway. This is, in essence, France’s answer to the Community Shield.
History of the French Ligue 1
The French Ligue 1, sometimes called Le Championnat, was inaugurated in September 1932 under the name National before the name of the league changed to Division 1 just after the first season. The Division 1 was rebranded in 2002 to its current name. Ligue 1 started with 20 teams in 1932 and continues with the same number to this day, including Marseille, Rennes, Montpellier, Nice, Metz and Nimes, who were part of the founding clubs and are still participating in the current Ligue 1 season.
A total of 73 clubs have participated in the Ligue 1 since its foundation to this current season. Paris Saint-Germain is the only club not to have suffered points relegation as they were administratively relegated in 1972, but returned to the Ligue 1 in 1974 where they’ve remained since. Following heavy investment by the Qatari State, PSG have enjoyed a stranglehold over the division in the 2010s. Their superstar-laden squads have often been comfortably superior to their counterparts and PSG have claimed seven of the last nine Ligue 1 titles.
PSG’s current supremacy resembles Lyon’s dynastical period at the turn of the Millennium. Although they won seven titles on the bounce between 2002 and 2008, they have failed to claim domestic glory since.
Recent Ligue 1 Winners
Most Successful Ligue 1 Teams
|Saint-Etienne||10||1956–57, 1963–64, 1966–67, 1967–68, 1968–69, 1969–70, 1973–74, 1974–75, 1975–76, 1980–81|
|Marseille||9||1936–37, 1947–48, 1970–71, 1971–72, 1988–89, 1989–90, 1990–91, 1991–92, 2009–10|
|Paris Saint-Germain||9||1985–86, 1993–94, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19, 2019–20|
|Monaco||8||1960–61, 1962–63, 1977–78, 1981–82, 1987–88, 1996–97, 1999–2000, 2016–17|
|Nantes||8||1964–65, 1965–66, 1972–73, 1976–77, 1979–80, 1982–83, 1994–95, 2000–01|
|Lyon||7||2001–02, 2002–03, 2003–04, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08|
|Bordeaux||6||1949–50, 1983–84, 1984–85, 1986–87, 1998–99, 2008–09|
|Reims||6||1948–49, 1952–53, 1954–55, 1957–58, 1959–60, 1961–62|
|Nice||4||1950–51, 1951–52, 1955–56, 1958–59|
|Lille||3||1945–46, 1953–54, 2010–11, 2020-21|
Which Players Have Scored the Most Ligue 1 Goals?
|Wissam Ben Yedder||101|
Which Players Have Most Recently Claimed the Ligue 1 Player of the Year Award?
|2021||Kylian Mbappe (PSG)|
|2019||Kylian Mbappe (PSG)|
|2017||Edinson Cavani (PSG)|
|2016||Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG)|
|2015||Alexandre Lacazette (Lyon)|
|2014||Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG)|
|2013||Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG)|
|2012||Eden Hazard (Lille)|
|2011||Eden Hazard (Lille)|
Ligue 1 Betting – Key Stats
- Marseille have enjoyed the most seasons in the top-flight (71).
- In the 2015/16, Paris Saint-Germain broke the single-season points record with 96.
- Mickael Landreau holds the record for most Ligue 1 appearances (618). Alain Giresse’s 586 appearances is the most by an outfield player.
- Former Marseille player Josip Skoblar holds the record for most goals scored in a single Ligue 1 season (44)
- Seven players have won the Ligue 1 title seven times. These are, Sidney Govou, Gregory Coupet and Juninho (Lyon), Jean-Michel Larque and Herve Revelli (St. Etienne), Thiago Silva and Marco Verratti (PSG).
Ligue 1 Betting FAQs
What are the best Ligue 1 betting sites?
How many teams participate in Ligue 1?
There are 20 teams in the French Ligue 1, as has been the case since 1932.
How are European places awarded in the Ligue 1?
Four European places in total are awarded to Ligue 1 teams. The top three earn entry into the following season’s UEFA Champions League (third place will enter the qualifiers), while fourth earns an automatic spot in the UEFA Europa League.
How many teams get relegated from Ligue 1?
Two teams get relegated from the Ligue 1 automatically to Ligue 2, while the third-from-bottom club in the top tier fights for survival against Ligue 2’s third-place team in a two-legged playoff game to determine who plays in the Ligue 1 the following season.
Is betting on the Ligue 1 popular?
Yes, Ligue 1 betting is very popular, and is a huge deal for many punters with a lot of different markets to wager on.
ThePuntersPage Final Say:
While PSG’s recent dominance in France may turn many punters away due to the competition’s perceived lack of competitiveness, Monaco’s success in 2016/17 and Lille’s in 2020/21 proves that Ligue 1 can still offer an unpredictable element, so keep your eyes open for Ligue 1 odds this year. The league is on the up following a difficult financial period, with the arrival of Lionel Messi a huge boost in almost every regard.
Some of Europe’s brightest talents manifest in the French top tier, with 2021/22 poised to be a watershed campaign for Ligue 1. For punters, while PSG matches will offer little value, there’s plenty to delve into elsewhere. Overall, Ligue 1 betting is an exciting and lucrative competition on which to bet.