MX23RW : Wednesday, August 4 09:46:09| >> :600:2833022:2833022:
May 2, 2021 at 2pm UK at Stade Francis-Le Blé
Simon (15'), Blas (27'), Louza (56'), Coulibaly (62' pen.), Faivre (83')
Larsonneur (61'), Charbonnier (89')
FT(HT: 2-0)

Preview: Brest vs. Nantes - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Brest and Nantes, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Nantes will aim to take another step towards safety in Ligue 1 when they travel to the Stade Francis-Le Ble to take on local rivals Brest on Sunday afternoon.

The hosts secured a 2-1 comeback win over Saint-Etienne last time out, while Nantes enjoyed victory in similar fashion against Strasbourg in gameweek 34.

Match preview

Brest coach Olivier Dall'Oglio pictured in January 2020© Reuters

An 11th-minute Wahbi Khazri strike threatened to condemn Brest to a winless April after a poor spate of results since the start of the month, but a one-man showing from Gaetan Charbonnier saw Les Pirates turn the game on its head after the break.

Standing in for the suspended Steve Mounie, Charbonnier struck a sumptuous free kick in the 66th minute to level the scores before netting the winner 13 minutes later, and that 2-1 win saw Brest pick up just their fourth victory since the turn of the year.

Olivier Dall'Oglio's men had failed to win in five before coming up trumps at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, and they are now sitting pretty in 13th spot - nine points clear of the relegation zone with just four games left to play - so their Ligue 1 status should be confirmed with a positive result this weekend.

Brest's leaky defence continues to hamper their aspirations of a top-half finish in the top flight, but no team in the bottom half has scored more than their 47 goals this season, and a newly-confident Charbonnier should certainly help fire Les Pirates closer to a top-10 spot in the final few weeks.

Dall'Oglio's side are now welcoming Nantes to a ground where they have lost just one of their last six, and while they have recorded three consecutive stalemates at the Stade Francis Le-Ble, another one-pointer would all but erase any faint fears of a relegation dogfight for the inconsistent Pirates.

Antoine Kombouare, now in charge of Nantes, pictured in 2019© Reuters

Nantes also claimed a 2-1 win of their own in very similar fashion last time out, as Strasbourg took the lead through Ludovic Ajorque's header on the stroke of half time at the Stade de la Meinau last Sunday.

Antoine Kombouare's side took just eight minutes of the second half to respond as Jean-Charles Castelletto used his own head to restore parity, and Ludovic Blas soon netted a simple tap-in from Moses Simon's pass to boost Les Canaris' survival hopes.

Nantes' victory at Strasbourg was their first win since that shock 2-1 triumph at Paris Saint-Germain on March 14, but Kombouare's side remain four points adrift of safety in the relegation playoff spot, while 19th-placed Nimes are only behind on goal difference.

Thankfully for Kombouare, his side have friendly fixtures with Bordeaux and already-relegated Dijon to come after their trip to Brest, and they have only lost one of their last six on the road, but they are without an away clean sheet in 12 matches.

Nantes picked up one of their only two home wins this season in a 3-1 success against Brest on October 18, but Les Pirates welcome Les Canaris to the Stade Francis Le-Ble on a five-game home unbeaten streak against their opponents.

Brest Ligue 1 form:
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • W

Nantes Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W

Team News

Brest's Irvin Cardona and Haris Belkebla in action in February 2021© Reuters

Brest striker Mounie is back from suspension for the visit of Nantes, but the former Huddersfield Town man may have to make do with a spot on the bench as Charbonnier hopes to keep his place alongside Irvin Cardona.

Jean Lucas is also back from a ban and could challenge Hugo Magnetti for a spot in the engine room, while Paul Lasne has undergone successful surgery on a cruciate ligament rupture and will spend several months recovering.

Sebastien Cibois, Christophe Herelle and Romain Philippoteaux all remain out of contention, but the latter is expected back before the season reaches its conclusion.

Kombouare has confirmed that left-back Charles Traore will be his only absentee for the short trip across Brittany, but he is making a quicker-than-expected recovery from a thigh issue and should be back soon.

Abdoul Kader Bamba was not involved at all last weekend but is in contention to feature here, although it would not be a surprise to see Kombouare stick with an unchanged side from the win at Strasbourg.

Brest possible starting lineup:
Larsonneur; Pierre-Gabriel, Chardonnet, Brassier, Perraud; Honorat, Lucas, Belkebla, Faivre; Cardona, Charbonnier

Nantes possible starting lineup:
Lafont; Corchia, Pallois, Castelletto, Appiah; Chirivella, Louza; Kolo Muani, Blas, Simon; Coulibaly

SM words green background

We say: Brest 1-2 Nantes

Brest have virtually nothing to play for as the season reaches its climax, and that may be reflected in their performance, but Charbonnier will have an eye for goal as he aims to score in consecutive games for the first time in his career.

Nantes are still fighting an uphill battle to drag themselves out of the bottom three, but with Brest normally inconsistent at best, we are tipping Kombouare's side to produce the goods when it matters most this weekend.

Top tip

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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States25292276
Great BritainGreat Britain14181547
Today's Olympic highlights header

Wednesday's key events

· Team GB starlet Sky Brown - aged just 13 - takes part in the women's park event and has a realistic chance of picking up a medal too. Bombette Martin is Britain's other representative, while hosts Japan are among the favourites for gold (1am)

· Great Britain's women have more history in their sights heading into their semi-final against Netherlands - the team they beat in the 2016 gold medal match (2.30am)

· The men's 400m hurdles final on Tuesday will go down as one of the greatest Olympic races of all time, and the women will attempt to emulate that, with new world record holder Sydney McLaughlin of USA and Netherlands' Femke Bol the favourites for gold (3.30am)
· Nick Miller is Britain's representative in the men's hammer throw final (12.15pm)
· The men's 800m final could be a wide-open affair (1.05pm)
· A thrilling men's 200m final is in store as the likes of Andre de Grasse, Noah Lyles and 17-year-old sensation Erriyon Knighton bid to succeed Usain Bolt as Olympic champion (1.55pm)

· After a medal-laden day on the water on Tuesday, Great Britain will be looking for more success, starting with Luke Patience and Chris Grube in the men's 470-class medal race (6.33am)
· Team GB also have medal hopes in the women's event, with defending champion Hannah Mills looking to retain her crown alongside new teammate Eilidh McIntyre (7.33am)

· Already guaranteed at least a bronze, Great Britain's Frazer Clarke faces Uzbekistan's Bakhodir Jalolov in the men's super heavyweight with a place in the gold medal bout up for grabs (7.03am)
· Ben Whittaker is also guaranteed a medal, but will look to ensure that is either gold or silver as he takes on Cuba's Arlen Lopez in the light heavyweight final (7.35am)

· World records have been tumbling in the velodrome, and another could go in the men's team pursuit final as Italy - new world record holders themselves - face Denmark (10.06am)

· Three Brits have made into into the final of the men's jumping individual final, including fastest qualifier Ben Maher, who will bid to inherit compatriot Nick Skelton's Olympic crown (11am)

> Today's schedule in full
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