Friday 15th April. 7:30PM. Live streaming available at Bet365
Mega rich PSG might have wrapped up the French league title weeks ago, but the race for Champions League qualification is really heating up as we approach the closing stages. On Friday night, two of the prime candidates collide at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais.
Just two points separate second from fourth heading into this crucial battle, which should lead to an evening of intense drama in France. But will it be Les Gones or Les Aiglons that are celebrating come full-time?
Whatever happens, it should be an explosive contest. And you can see the drama unfold live with Bet365.
Lyon Out To Secure Driving Seat
Bruno Genesio’s men have enjoyed a fantastic season in Ligue 1 and, while they are still some way short of PSG, it’s great to see them back amongst the frontrunners in French football. A run of three straight wins has thrust them into second place and a win over Nice on Friday could be the catalyst to seal that runner-up spot.
The goals of Alexandre Lacazette have been instrumental once again, and the Frenchman could have another huge say in this pivotal encounter. Meanwhile, the hosts will be thrilled to have seen Nabil Fekir return from injury earlier this month and will be hoping to see the young midfielder make a difference in the closing weeks.
If Lyon do confirm a Champions League place, it’ll be largely thanks to a home record that includes 10 wins and three draw from 16. That run includes 33 goals, and they’ll be eager to increase that tally en route to scoring a vital win.
Lyon do boast some decent quality throughout the side and the experience of Rafael, Steed Malbranque and Mathieu Valbuena could be key. The crowd will certainly be behind their boys. If they live up to expectations on the pitch, they should take another huge step towards next season’s Champions League.
Can Underdogs Cause A Shock?
The visitors might be Nice by name, but they can ill-afford to show their opponents too much respect here. They did that at PSG just two weeks ago and were hammered 4-1. For the sake of the spectacle, let’s hope Claude Puel’s side have learnt their lessons.
No matter what happens, this will be considered a good season for the visitors. However, having come so far, they’ll be desperate to finish in the top three. Victory against their rivals would go a long way to putting the odds in their favour, and 16-goal playmaker Hatem Ben Arfa may be their best hope. The former Newcastle man has resurrected his career at the Allianz Riviera and could be key to pulling the strings here.
However, Nice can also look to their formidable defence as a source of inspiration. Three clean sheets in their last four matches will give Yoan Cardinale huge confidence heading into this one. If they can keep things tight at the back and nick a goal at the other end, an top three finish could well be on the cards.
It will be a fascinating contest from start to finish, and will be the perfect way to start another thrilling weekend of drama. Do not miss it.
Lyon v Nice Betting
With home advantage on their side, Bet365 have established Lyon as firm favourites at odds of ½. However, some punters may see value in Nice at 11/2 while the draw can be backed at 10/3.
It’s hard to overlook Lyon’s cracking home form, particularly as Nice’s away form is average at best. Nevertheless, this is a massive occasion and the visitors are more than capable of making a great account of themselves.
We do think Nice can increase their tally of 22 away goals. Sadly, Lyon are equally likely to extend their home record of 33 goals to rack up win number 11 at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais. We’re backing the hosts to win, but with the visitors grabbing a goal too.
Big games call for big players, and Lacazette is unquestionably one of the greatest stars in French football right now. Last week’s blank was his first in five matches, but we think he’ll get back to scoring ways against Nice.
Not only that, we think he’ll grab two goals for the third time in six matches too. At odds of 10/3, we cannot resist. After all, if he scores one, there may be a chance to cash out for decent profit anyway. Either way, watching the game will allow you to make an informed decision.