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Ligue 1 | Gameweek 14
Dec 3, 2023 at 4.05pm UK
Stade Pierre-Mauroy
Metz logo
2 - 0
Yazici (45+2'), David (45+6' pen.)
FT(HT: 2-0)

Preview: Lille vs. Metz - prediction, team news, lineups

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

Fresh from their Europa Conference League victory in midweek, Lille return to Ligue 1 action when they welcome Metz to Stade Pierre-Mauroy on Sunday.

While the hosts have not lost in any competition since the end of September, the visitors are hoping to extend their unbeaten league run to five matches.

Match preview

Lille coach Paulo Fonseca reacts on October 26, 2023© Reuters

After failing to qualify for European competition last season, Lille have secured their place in the knockout rounds of the Conference League this term after beating NK Olimpija Ljubljana 2-0 on Thursday to guarantee a top-two finish in Group A.

Goals either side of half time from Remy Cabella and Yusuf Yazici helped the French outfit claim a routine win over their Slovenian counterparts and extend their impressive unbeaten run across all competitions to 11 matches.

Paulo Fonseca's side need to match or better the result of Slovan Bratislava in their final group game against KI Klaksvik in two weeks' time to secure top spot in Group A and automatically enter the last-16 phase, but they must first shift their focus back to Ligue 1 for back-to-back games against Metz and Clermont.

Lille have already shown signs that they are capable of challenging for a Champions League qualification spot in Ligue 1 this term, as they currently sit fourth in the top-flight standings after accumulating 23 points from 13 matches, just one point behind Monaco in third and seven adrift of leaders Paris Saint-Germain.

Les Dogues will fancy their chances of success on Sunday as they have won 39 Ligue 1 games against Metz, their joint-highest tally against a top-flight opponent along with Sochaux. Fonseca's side have also won their last eight home matches against promoted teams and have only lost one of their last 22 league games on home soil.

Metz players celebrate a goal on September 17, 2023© Reuters

Metz enter Sunday's contest after celebrating back-to-back Ligue 1 victories for the first time since February 2021 after they beat Nantes and Lorient either side of the international break.

A 3-1 home victory over Nantes in mid-November was followed by an enthralling 3-2 away triumph against Lorient last weekend, a game in which Les Grenats were losing 2-1 heading into the final half hour before strikes from Ismael Traore and Ablie Jallow, the latter netting an 83rd-minute penalty, turned the game on its head.

Laszlo Boloni's men, who secured promotion from the second tier last season after finishing second, have climbed up to ninth in the Ligue 1 table, five points above the relegation zone, after picking up eight points from their last four fixtures.

Metz have fared slightly better on the road so far this season, as they have collected 10 Ligue 1 points in seven away matches compared with just six in as many games on home soil.

Coming away with a positive away result on Sunday could prove challenging, though, as they have only won one of their last 15 visits to Lille over the last 28 years – a 2-0 victory in May 2017.

Lille Ligue 1 form:

Lille form (all competitions):

Metz Ligue 1 form:

Team News

Lille's Benjamin Andre celebrates scoring their first goal on October 8, 2023© Reuters

Lille defender Tiago Djalo remains sidelined with an ACL injury, while Ismaily and Bafode Diakite are both doubtful with respective hamstring and leg problems and will be assessed ahead of kickoff.

Gabriel Gudmundsson is the most likely candidate to continue at left-back if Ismaily is not deemed fit to feature, potentially joining Alexsandro Ribeiro, Leny Yoro and Tiago Santos in the back four.

Although Yazici scored as a central striker last time out, star man Jonathan David is expected to return to the first XI and lead the line after being rested in midweek, while Benjamin Andre is available to start in midfield after missing the last Ligue 1 match through suspension.

As for Metz, Christophe Herelle (hamstring) and Maxime Colin (unspecified) both missed last weekend's game due to injury and the duo are considered as doubts for Sunday, while Oscar Estupinan (hamstring) and Aboubacar Lo (unspecified) remain in the treatment room.

Boloni is unlikely to make too many changes, if any, to the side that beat Lorient last time out, so the likes of Traore, Fali Cande, Danley Jean Jacques, Kevin Van Den Kerkhof and Simon Elisor are all set to continue in the first XI.

Lille possible starting lineup:
Chevalier; Santos, Yoro, Ribeiro, Gudmundsson; Bentaleb, Andre; Zhegrova, Cabella, Cavaleiro; David

Metz possible starting lineup:
Oukidja; Kouao, Cande, Traore, Udol; Jean Jacques, Camara; Van Den Kerkhof, Jallow, Sabaly; Elisor

SM words green background

We say: Lille 2-1 Metz

A closely-fought contest between two in-form teams could be on the cards on Sunday, but considering that Lille are set to recall a few first-team regulars who were rested in midweek, we expect Fonceca's men to have few issues coming away with all three points on home soil.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data

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