MX23RW : Monday, April 19 14:59:16| >> :600:121348:121348:
Feb 28, 2021 at 2pm UK at Stade des Costieres
Kone (76')
Miguel (5')
Miguel (90+1')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Blas (27')
Appiah (58')

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

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

Nimes host Nantes on Sunday in a Ligue 1 relegation battle, with newly-appointed managers from both sides heading into this fixture yet to lose in the league since taking charge of their respective clubs earlier this month.

The Crocodiles in 17th sit one place above the visitors, who currently occupy the relegation playoff position, and a win for either side would provide a huge boost in their quest to avoid the drop.

Match preview

Nimes attacker Rachid Alioui in action against Nantes in February 2019© Reuters

The revival of Nimes under new head coach Pascal Plancque continued on Wednesday night, but they left it late in sealing a narrow 1-0 victory at home to Lorient.

An 88th-minute penalty converted by Renaud Ripart helped secure three precious points for the Crocodiles, who moved out of the danger zone for the first time since early December.

After a run of six defeats in seven games, Jerome Arpinon was replaced by Plancque at the beginning of February, and he has since guided Nimes to three consecutive Ligue 1 wins, without conceding a goal.

Following victories against basement club Dijon, 11th-placed Bordeaux and now Lorient in 19th, Plancque's side face off against Nantes, who are one position below them in 18th, in another important game at the bottom of the table this weekend, with hopes of keeping the momentum going and climbing further away from danger.

Nimes will be wary of the threat that the visitors pose after losing their last two Ligue 1 games against them by an aggregate score of 3-1.

However, claiming three points on Sunday would round off a brilliant run of form in February, giving Plancque's side plenty of belief that they can preserve their top-flight status this campaign.

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

Like Plancque, Antoine Kombouare has made an instant impact with his new club, earning four points from his first two matches in charge of Nantes, with a 3-1 win away at Angers followed by a 1-1 draw at home to Marseille last weekend.

Despite breaking the deadlock in the second half through Ludovic Blas, the Canaries were unable to hold onto their lead as Dimitri Payet's strike in the 69th minute was enough to earn the visitors a point at the Stade de la Beaujoire.

Prior to the appointment of Kombouare, Nantes had gone 15 league games without a victory, the longest such streak of any team in the top-flight so far this season. However, they are now just one point adrift of this weekend's opponents Nimes, who are precariously placed one place above them.

Nantes will fancy their chances against the Crocodiles after beating them 2-1 back in August but head to the south of France having won only one of their last eight away matches in Ligue 1, which was their most recent trip to Angers.

The Canaries are hoping that recent results under Kombouare are the beginning of a much-needed revival that can propel them out of the danger zone and with three of their next five fixtures against sides in the bottom five, positive results in the coming weeks would provide a massive boost in their quest to survive the drop.

Claiming successive away victories for the first time this season would see Nantes switch places with Nimes and move four points behind Reims, who they come up against next Wednesday.

Nimes Ligue 1 form: LLLWWW
Nimes form (all competitions): LLLWWW

Nantes Ligue 1 form: LLDLWD
Nantes form (all competitions): LDLLWD

Team News

Nantes players in a team huddle before the clash with Monaco on September 13, 2020© Reuters

The injury list at Nimes is beginning to mount as Anthony Briancon (thigh), Lucas Deaux (calf), Pablo Martinez (knee), Sidy Sarr (leg) and Karim Aribi (ankle) are all ruled out through injury.

Zinedine Ferhat is back from his one-match suspension and is expected to start on the right-wing, which could see Niclas Eliasson drop to the bench.

Plancque is set to stick with the 4-1-4-1 formation that has been successful since he joined the club this month, with Ripart adopting a more central attacking position in midfield instead of featuring on the left flank, where he has played for the majority of this season.

For Nantes, Sebastien Corchia, Kalifa Coulibaly, and Fabio Da Silva remain unavailable for selection through injury.

Kombouare could name the same starting lineup that drew with Marseille, which would see forwards Moses Simon and Randal Kolo partner each other once again up front.

Nimes possible starting lineup:
Reynet; Burner, Guessoum, Miguel, Meling; Fomba; Ferhat, Ripart, Benrahou, Duljevic; Kone

Nantes possible starting lineup:
Lafont; Appiah, Girotto, Castelletto, Traore; Blas, Toure, Chirivella, Louza; Simon, Kolo

SM words green background

We say: Nimes 2-1 Nantes

Both Nimes and Nantes will view this weekend's clash as a great opportunity to claim all three points as they aim to clamber to safety.

The Canaries got the better of the Crocodiles earlier this season, but Sunday's hosts might just have enough to edge out the visitors on Sunday in what is expected to be a tight encounter at the Costieres Stadium.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting an away 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.Away Win:data

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