Thursday, April 25, 2024

Prediction: Lille vs Lens

Stefan Budur in Free Soccer Predictions, Ligue 1 27 Mar 2024

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Verdict: Lens to score in 1st half

Best odds: 2.40

Bookmaker: ZetBet

Round 27 of Ligue 1 kicks off Friday night at Stade Pierre-Mauroy with Lille hosting Lens in a battle for a top 4 finish. The stake is high considering the teams are separated by a single point with 11 rounds to go.

Lille

Lille are going through an excellent period both domestically and in Europe. The team coached by Paulo Fonseca is unbeaten in the last 5 matches, a run that has propelled Lille to 4th place. They currently sit tied on points with Nice.

The Mastiffs made a strong showing in the Conference League as well by reaching the quarter-finals after demolishing Sturm Graz in a double-header (4-1 aggregate score). Moreover, the Stade Pierre-Mauroy is becoming a real fortress with Lille unbeaten since the end of September when Reims managed to win 2-1 on the bounce.

Lille’s fate looks to be decided in the next three weeks. After the Lens game, the hosts will welcome Marseille, followed by a fiery knockout double in the Conference League against Aston Villa. Following their two-match winless run in the league, the hosts need three points to get back on track. However, Paulo Fonseca’s side is playing attacking football, with his players finding the back of the net in all their competitive games and rather than betting on a winner here, our suggestion is to go for goals.

Team News

Centre forward Andrej Ilic is out with a broken fibula. His recovery is progressing well, and the young striker is set to return at the beginning of April.

Fonseca will persist with his lineup, which includes an aggressive 4-3-3 formation. The back four will consist of Santos, Yoro, Diakite, and Ismaily. A potent and skilled midfield trio built of Gomez, Andre, and Bentaleb will support the attacking play. Wingers Haraldson and Zhergova will assist leading goalscorer Jonathan David.

Lens

Lens are slowing down during a crucial time of the season. The hosts suffered a knockout punch in the Europa League’s last 16 after a double fixture against Freiburg. However, it can be sad that Lens lacked luck in this competition as they lost in the penalty shootout against the Germans.

In Ligue 1, the players coached by Franck Haise are 6th in the standings and are currently engaged in a tough fight for a Champions League spot. The visitors repeatedly failed to get the job done away from home, however, winning only 5 of their 13 outings. Needless to say, this makes their Champions League pursuit pretty difficult.

A long season with difficult games played every three days has left Lens players with fatigue. This was obvious in the last five Ligue 1 games from which Lens managed to win only two. As a result,  Lens now trail Nice and Lille in the top 4 race.

The squad led by Franck Haise will be hoping to build up on their most recent success, however. They defeated Lyon on the road at Groupama Stadium hammering OL 3-0 in the end, demonstrating their blatant dominance.

With an easier schedule in the next period, Lens can move up the table if they beat Le Havre, Metz and Clermont. Besides, European Cup position contenders Marseille and Rennes seem to be the only opponents that could pose problems for Franck Hasie’s team until the end of the season.

Team News

Since October, right midfielder Jimmy Cabbot has been out with a cruciate ligament tear. He is not expected to recover until the end of the season. Deiver Machado is still recovering from his adductor injury and will not travel to Lille.

Przemyslaw Frankowski complained about a thigh problem in training and will likely not play against Lille. Centre-back Abdoukanir Kusanov is serving a yellow card suspension.

Key factors to consider

  • Lille are one of the best home teams in the Ligue, suffering only one defeat this season (1-2 with Reims)
  • Paulo Fonseca’s side is playing attacking football scoring at least one goal in all of their competitive games played this term
  • The hosts won 3 of their last 4 games played against Lens at Stade Pierre-Mauroy
  • Lens form is dipping, following a heavy home defeat against Nice (1-3)
  • The visitors won only two of their last seven competitive games across all competitions
  • Franck Haise’s players are trailing Lille and Nice in the Champions League qualification race

Conclusion

There is a direct fight between Lille and Lens for a top 4 finish. At Stade Pierre-Mauroy, the hosts are tough to beat, but the visitors proved capable of getting the job done. A goal scored by Lens in the first half is priced great, especially given Franck Haise’s team’s offensive prowess.

Verdict: Lens to score in 1st half

Best odds: 2.40

Bookmaker: ZetBet

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Stefan Budur


Former owner of Betting Mojo, experienced bettor and former punter at Betadvisor, Stefan has done it all when it comes to soccer betting. With more than 15 years of experience in the gambling industry, he gained a lot of knowledge that he'd like to share with SoccerNews.com readers so you can position yourself better every time you place a bet.

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