MX23RW : Saturday, December 4 14:40:07| >> :600:7695928:7695928:
Sep 27, 2020 at 2pm UK at Stade des Costieres
NimesNimes
1-1
LensLens
Ferhat (87')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Ganago (34')
Gradit (2'), Medina (50'), Perez (90+6')

Preview: Nimes vs. Lens - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Nimes and Lens, including team news and predicted lineups.

Lens will be looking to keep their strong run of form in Ligue 1 going when they travel to Nimes for Sunday's Ligue 1 showdown.

In contrast, Nimes find themselves near the relegation places having registered one win, one draw and two losses thus far.


Match preview

Nimes manager Jerome Arpinon pictured in February 2019© Reuters

There would have been no shame in losing to a Lyon side packed with talent all across the pitch, but Nimes produced a magnificent display to keep Memphis Depay and co at bay and hold Lyon to a goalless stalemate last Friday.

Jerome Arpinon must have been fearing a third successive defeat as Nimes travelled to Les Gones, but Les Crocodiles managed to arrest their slump before a daunting run of October fixtures begins for Nimes.

Following their clash with an in-form Lens side, Arpinon's men will be taking on Montpellier, Paris Saint-Germain and Bordeaux, so barring any shock results in those fixtures, Nimes will struggle to rise further away from the dotted line heading into the final months of the year.

A total of 10 goals have been scored in two matches at the Stade des Costieres so far this season, with Les Crocodiles marching to a 4-0 victory over Brest before succumbing to a 4-2 defeat to Rennes in their most recent home game.

Lens manager Franck Haise pictured in September 2020© Reuters

In contrast, Lens have exceeded expectations following their return to the top flight after a five-year absence, and last season's Ligue 2 runners up find themselves in the top four at this early stage.

Since their opening-day defeat to Nice, Lens have recorded three straight victories over PSG, Lorient and most recently Bordeaux, who conceded their first goals of the season against Franck Haise's men last Saturday.

Indeed, Bordeaux's resolute defence was finally breached at the fourth attempt, with Ignatius Ganago and Gael Kakuta on target for Lens before Samuel Kalu added a consolation for Les Girondins in the final minutes.

Lens are expected to tail off as the season gathers pace, but for now, Haise can be delighted with the way that his side have gone about their business in the first few weeks of the new campaign.

Nimes and Lens met once last season in the third round of the Coupe de la Ligue, and it was Les Crocodiles who eased to a 3-0 victory in that tie.

Nimes Ligue 1 form: WLLD

Lens Ligue 1 form: LWWW


Team News

Lens celebrate scoring against Paris Saint-Germain in Ligue 1 on September 10, 2020© Reuters

Nimes have a plethora of absentees to contend with for the showdown with Lens, with Arpinon confirming that Lucas Deaux and Moussa Kone are unlikely to be involved.

Sofiane Alakouch will also be forced to miss this one out, meaning that Gaetan Paquiez will continue to deputise at right-back.

However, Birger Meling is back and in contention to start on the opposite side of defence. Pablo Martinez and Clement Depres are still on the treatment table, however.

As for Lens, Seko Fofana returned to action off the bench against Bordeaux, but the midfielder's hamstring problem has since flared up again.

Jonathan Clauss will continue to occupy the right flank in the absence of Cheick Traore, while fellow right-back Clement Michelin is out for a few weeks with a sprained ankle.

Nimes possible starting lineup:
Reynet; Paquiez, Briancon, Landre, Meling; Cubas, Sarr; Ferhat, Benrahou, Duljevic; Ripart

Lens possible starting lineup:
Leca; Medina, Fortes, Gradit; Clauss, Doucoure, Cahuzac, Sylla; Kakuta; Sotoca, Ganago


SM words green background

We say: Nimes 1-2 Lens

Both sides can be proud of their performances in gameweek four and will feel equally capable of walking away from this encounter with maximum points. However, Lens are making a name for themselves at this early stage and are playing like they were never away from the top flight, and while Nimes will look to keep up their strong goalscoring form at home, we still expect Haise's men to prevail.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals 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.Under 3.5:data

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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Toulouse1696136142233
2Ajaccio179531881032
3Sochaux179441713431
4Paris FCParis FC179352015530
5Auxerre168532618829
6Le HavreLe Havre177821710729
7Rodez AFRodez AF177461916325
8PauPau177371818024
9NiortNiort166371618-221
10GuingampGuingamp175662124-321
11Grenoble176381621-521
12Nimes175571921-220
13Quevilly175571622-620
14Valenciennes175571322-920
15Dijon1761101925-619
16AmiensAmiens173951817118
17Bastia174671417-318
18Caen164571617-117
19DunkerqueDunkerque174491422-816
20Nancy172691328-1512

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