Lille and St Etienne Chase Elusive Europa League PlacePublished May 14, 2016 by Florin P
Nothing short of victory is acceptable when Lille takes on St Etienne (8:00 p.m UK Time).
Lille and St Etienne serve as excellent examples of how an otherwise solid season can be reduced to shreds in a matter of days. Both teams had a decent shot at securing a Champions League berth, but now even playing in Europa League looks like a far-fetched scenario. They dropped precious points in the last round and now have to chase an elusive victory, while hoping that Nice fails against Guingamp.
When Defense Fails Miserably
Lille is an avatar of defensive precision and their performance throughout the season was defined by their ability to keep clean sheets both at home and on the road. This strategy served them well in many games, but failed miserably in the last round, when they failed to claim the essential 3 points against Guingamp.
Now they will try to make amends for that unfortunate outcome and win a match on the road, against a team equally good at defending. Lille does have enough options up front to exercise pressure throughout the entire game, but they need to come out firing on all cylinders. This is in stark contrast with their regular strategy and once again it could backfire and result in a handful of goals conceded.
Back-to-back Failures for St Etienne
St Etienne was well-positioned to take on Monaco, Nice and even Lyon and had a decent shot at playing in the Champions League next season. Their inability to defeat Toulouse at home and then the pathetic performance on the road at Nice was their downfall. They now have home pitch advantage once again, but that probably won’t mean much if they play the same defensive game.
Punters are used to betting on few goals to be scored in the first French division and both Lille and St Etienne are prime candidates for Under Bets. Those who do the exact opposite and count on their hunger for points will enjoy spectacular odds of 13/10 on more than 2.5 goals to be scored courtesy of bet365 Sports.