Saint Etienne v Marseille Betting Preview & Tips | 16/01/19

Saint Etienne v Marseille Betting Preview & Tips

Sam Langston (@Samlan98) previews Saint-Étienne v Marseille and provides us with his best bets for Wednesday evening’s Ligue 1 clash by analysing team news, potential line-ups, head-to-head, key stats and facts and more.

Saint-Étienne v Marseille Betting Preview, Odds & Tips

  • Date: 16/01/2019
  • Time: 20:00
  • Venue: Stade Geoffroy-Guichard
  • Channel: BT Sport 3

A whole host of Ligue 1 fixtures, including Saint-Étienne’s showdown with Marseille, have had to be cancelled within the past month due to concerns of potential violence at anti-government protests. Now, Les Verts and Les Olympians, two of France’s most decorated clubs, are scheduled to lock horns this Wednesday evening – it’s a game that should be worth the wait.

Fourth-positioned Saint-Étienne, who situate five places above Rudi García’s guests, are excelling at their Stade Geoffroy-Guichard base and maintaining this form in front of their fans will be key in challenging for a spot in Europe. Jean-Louis Gasset’s group boast an excellent W7-D2-L0 home record, the second best set of results in the division, meaning a substantial 23 of their 33 points have been earned at the Geoffroy-Guichard this term.

At home, Gasset’s tends to set his side up in a 4-2-3-1 formation and it’s his effective utilization of two holding midfielders which is one of the main reasons for Saint-Étienne’s success. Norway international Ole Selnæs operates in a screening role alongside the well-travelled Yann M’Vila, allowing a forward-line of familiar faces the freedom to counter their opponents at pace. Having contributed directly to 24 out of 29 league goals this season, the trio of former Sunderland winger Wahbi Khazri, Newcastle cast-off Rémy Cabella, and previous Bristol City loanee Loïs Diony, are vital for Les Verts going forward.

Entertaining Étienne are averaging 2.11 goals per-game at the Geoffroy-Guichard and underlying performance data confirms this free-scoring form is well deserved. Gasset’s men are ranking in the top five for each of: shots, shots on target, shots in the penalty area, and shots in the six-yard box, whilst only domestic dominators PSG can eclipse their 1.78 xG average. Having struck 19 times from 144 attempts at an impressive rate of 13.19%, this also rates ASSE fifth in the home shot conversion metric.

Marseille followers have also seen a plethora of action on their travels, with games involving Les Olympians averaging a whopping 3.67 goals. The French giants are situating in the top ten for each of the four main shot metrics, xG, and conversion rate, and with Dimitri Payet and Florian Thauvin in their ranks, they’re always good value to grab a few goals.

However, for all their attacking qualities, OM’s stars are struggling severely at the opposite end of the pitch. Rudi García’s group are conceding an average of 2.2 goals on the road, the highest figure in Ligue 1, and have in fact failed to win in eight games in all competitions. Most notably, this run includes an embarrassing 2-0 Coupe de France defeat at fourth-tier outfit Andrezieux, but a number of pitiful displays in Europe haven’t helped proceedings either. Last season’s Europa League finalists lost five of their six group stage fixtures, conceding 16 goals in the process, and exited the competition bottom of Group H having picked up just a single point.

Under-fire gaffer Rudi García’s is persisting with his favoured 4-3-3 formation and this is what many believe is to blame for the current struggles at the club. His stubborn use of the system sees chief creator Dimitri Payet shift out wide, despite the skipper being much better suited to a more central attacking midfield position. The other issue with this system is that it encourages an overly offensive wing-back approach, with full-backs Jordan Amavi and Bouna Sarr tending to bomb down their respective flanks. Ageing centre-half partners Adil Rami and Rolando are therefore left exposed and this provides Marseile’s opposition plenty of opportunities to capitalise on the counter.

Team News

Defensive duo Mathieu Debuchy and Neven Subotić are back in training for Saint-Étienne, but Wednesday may be a little early for the former to feature. Jean-Louis Gasset could therefore once again revert to a 3-4-1-2 system – the same one employed in his side’s 1-0 victory at Guingamp on Saturday.

Rudi García may opt to freshen up the Marseille starting line-up here. Lucas Ocampos operated in a false nine position in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Monaco but the OM boss has the option to rotate up-front with either Kostas Mitroglou or Valère Germain. After being left on the bench at the weekend, Adil Rami may also come in at centre-back.

Potential Saint-Étienne Starting XI: Ruffier, Kolodziejczak, Perrin, Subotić, Gabriel, M’Vila, Selnæs, Monnet-Paquet, Cabella, Khazri, Diony.

Potential Marseille Starting XI: Mandanda, Amavi, Rolando, Rami, Sarr, Gustavo, Strootman, Sanson, Payet, Thauvin, Mitroglou.

Head To Head

  • Saint-Étienne’s last competitive win against Marseille came at the Goeffroy-Guichard in August 2013. Brandão and current Captain Loïc Perrin sealed a 2-0 win for the hosts on that day.

Key Stats & Facts

  • Overs has banked in the previous three meetings between these sides.
  • Marseille have lost each of their three away games to teams who currently place fifth or higher. Over 2.5 Goals has landed in each of these fixtures.

Betting Odds

  • Saint-Étienne – 29/20
  • Draw – 5/2
  • Marseille – 101/50

The Verdict

I was pleasantly surprised to see Marathon go a healthy 22/25 on Overs here.

Saint-Étienne are demonstrating an impressive attacking proficiency on home soil and we can expect them to exploit this defensively susceptible Marseille outfit.

Despite their recent troubles, OM are also more than capable of getting on the scoresheet as well, having only failed to score on three occasions in Ligue 1 this term.

Collectively, 12 out of these sides’ 18 (66.67%) respective home and away games have produced at least three goals, so the price being offered on Overs looks to be excellent value.

Recommended Bets

  • 1 point – Over 2.5 Goals – 22/25 (Marathon Bet)