FC Metz vs Lille OSC Preview 08/08/2021

It seems to be a foregone conclusion that Lille will fail to retain the Ligue 1 title and Paris Saint-Germain will walk to the championship this season. No one seemed to have told Lille that this was the plan.

Les Dogues shocked onlookers with a 1-0 win against Paris Saint-Germain in last weekend’s Trophee des Champions. Xeka’s 45th minute goal was enough for the win to nil.

— Fc Metz ☨ (@FCMetz) August 3, 2021

Lille are now out to surprise everyone under new manager Jocelyn Gourvennec.

Days after winning Ligue 1 in 2020-21, manager Chrisophe Galtier left for Nice due to their strong financial sustainability. Lille were forced to sell a few players and are in the market to sell more squad members to right the books due to financial issues.

Gourvennec has not coached since the 2018-19 season at Guingamp. His pedigree is not very strong with two stints at Guingamp and one at Bordeaux to his name.

Two key players from the title win have already left. Goalkeeper Mike Maignan has gone to AC Milan to replace Gianluigi Donnarumma and Leicester City signed defensive midfielder Boubakary Soumare. The midfield, defence and attack are mostly still in place, for now.

Metz go into the season following last term’s solid midtable finish. Metz ended the campaign in 10th place with 47 points from 38 games. They had a goal difference of –4 for with 44 goals scored and 48 conceded.

Lille won both matches in 2020-21 between the sides. Les Dogues posted a 1-0 home win and a 2-0 away victory. Lille are unbeaten in five straight Ligue 1 games against FC Metz with three wins and two draws.

Gourvennec has no fresh injury issues going into matchday 1 of Ligue 1. Metz manager Frédéric Antonetti does have one injury issue heading into the game. Manuel Cabit is ruled out for the campaign with a leg issue.

Metz have had a strong preseason with wins over Troyes and Montpellier to their name. However, they are playing a competitive match now and Lille have already sealed a victory over Paris Saint-Germain. The Trophee de Champions win once again showed how strong the team’s defence is.

Lille had Ligue 1’s best defence last season with 23 goals allowed. Their defence should continue to be strong and is likely to be in the top three of fewest goals scored at the end of the campaign.

The defence should step up on matchday 1 versus Metz as Lille win to nil. Expect this to be another low-scoring Lille game with under 2.5 goals as they claim a win to nil.

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