Oct 18, 2020 at 2pm UK
Mangani (38' pen.)
Doumbia (14'), Thomas (36'), Moulin (41'), Traore (73'), Fulgini (86')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Nguette (39')
Udol (37'), Pajot (84')

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

:Headline: Preview: Angers vs. Metz - prediction, team news, lineups: ID:418514: from db_amp
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Angers and Metz, including team news and predicted lineups.

Metz will be looking to stretch their unbeaten run in the French top flight to four games when they travel to Angers for Sunday's Ligue 1 clash.

The hosts, meanwhile, are looking to return to winning ways following their humbling 6-1 defeat at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain before the international break.

Match preview

Had Angers travelled to PSG at the very start of the season, they may have felt cautiously optimistic about their chances of walking away from the Parc des Princes with something to show for it.

However, with the champions now back at full-strength and playing like their old selves, Stephane Moulin's men proved no match for the capital outfit as PSG stormed to a 6-1 victory in gameweek six.

While that thrashing means that Angers have now conceded more goals than any other team in the division this season (14), Les Scoistes currently sit in 12th following three wins and three losses thus far - a respectable standing which Moulin would no doubt be satisfied with at this early stage.

Angers are in the midst of a consistent spell of form - winning one then losing one since the 2020-21 Ligue 1 campaign began - but their chances of keeping that up and marching to victory against Metz will be easier said than done given the visitors' strong recent results.

Metz endured a woeful start to the campaign as they lost their opening three matches, but Les Grenats have since turned their fortunes around with victories over Reims and Lorient either side of a draw with Marseille.

However, there will be the return of a familiar face in the Metz dugout this weekend as Frederic Antonetti comes back to take the reins after a prolonged absence for personal reasons, while Vincent Hognon - who had been in charge since last year - has now departed.

The Metz faithful will undoubtedly be glad to welcome back the man who steered them back to the top flight in the 2018-19 campaign, and Les Grenats are sure to be motivated to give Antonetti the return he deserves as they bid to pick up where they left off following the international break.

However, Angers have won the last three meetings between the two sides in all competitions, with Les Scoistes marching to a 3-0 triumph in this fixture last season.

Angers Ligue 1 form: WLWLWL

Metz Ligue 1 form: LLLWDW

Team News

Angers forward Stephane Bahoken will miss out due to suspension, which means that Lois Diony should come back in to spearhead the Scoistes attack.

Moulin opted for a 5-4-1 against PSG but is expected to revert back to a four-man defence here, with that drubbing proving to be Rayan Ait Nouri's last game for the French outfit before the teenager joined Wolverhampton Wanderers on loan.

Ait Nouri's departure means that Souleyman Doumbia should come back into the fold on the left-hand side of defence, while Thomas Mangani is in line to replace Lassana Coulibaly in midfield, with the Mali international recently testing positive for coronavirus.

As for Metz, the visitors have been dealt a huge blow with Ibrahima Niane - currently leading the way in the top scorer charts with six strikes to his name - out for several months after rupturing his ACL.

The 21-year-old's absence means that Papa Ndiaga Yade is set to lead the Metz attack, while Antonetti must also make do without Habib Maiga as the midfielder serves a suspension.

Centre-back Mamadou Fofana will be watching this one from home after testing positive for coronavirus.

Angers possible starting lineup:
Bernardoni; Bamba, Traore, Thomas, Doumbia; Amadou, Mangani, Fulgini; Thioub, Diony, Capelle

Metz possible starting lineup:
Oukidja; Centonze, Bronn, Boye, Udol; Angban, Pajot; Tchimbembe, Nguette, Maziz; Yade

We say: Angers 2-1 Metz

Metz can feel positive about welcoming Antonetti back to the club, but on the other hand, the absence of Niane is sure to affect Les Grenats going forward. The 21-year-old bagged all three of Metz's goals in their recent win over Lorient and the visitors have a number of other absentees to contend with for the trip to Angers, so we expect Moulin's men to come out on top in this one.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or draw 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/Draw:data

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7Montpellier HSCMontpellier7322139411
10Saint-EtienneSt Etienne7313910-110
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