Nov 1, 2020 at 12pm UK
St EtienneSaint-Etienne
MontpellierMontpellier HSC

Khazri (31'), Hamouma (51'), Aouchiche (72')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Mavididi (14')
Laborde (63'), Dolly (68'), Yun (90+1')

Preview: Saint-Etienne vs. Montpellier HSC - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Saint-Etienne vs. Montpellier HSC - prediction, team news, lineups: ID:420305: from db_amp
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Saint-Etienne and Montpellier HSC, including team news and predicted lineups.

Saint-Etienne will be aiming to put an end to their torrid spell of form in Ligue 1 when they welcome Montpellier HSC to the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard for Sunday's fixture.

Similarly, the visitors head into this game on a four-game winless run having not triumphed since the fourth gameweek of the season.

Match preview

Saint-Etienne began the 2020-21 season in perfect fashion with three wins and three clean sheets, but having been top of the pile in the opening few weeks, Les Verts have now slipped to 13th following an abysmal spell of form.

The loss of Wesley Fofana to Leicester City was sure to affect Claude Puel's men going forward, but Saint-Etienne have simply capitulated and head into gameweek nine following four straight defeats to Rennes, Lens, Nice and Metz - with Farid Boulaya and an own goal from Alpha Sissoko securing a 2-0 win for the latter last Sunday.

In fairness, Puel has been plagued by injuries in recent weeks, but Saint-Etienne cannot make many excuses for their losing streak with the quality they have in their ranks, with Les Verts one of only two sides in the top flight not to have won any of their last five games - the other being Dijon.

The Saint-Etienne faithful will be desperate to see their side march to victory over an equally-woeful Montpellier outfit in order to arrest their slump, with Les Verts certainly more likely to come out on top in this one rather than in next weekend's clash with Lyon.

Montpellier do not hold the same unfortunate record of four defeats on the bounce, but Michel Der Zakarian's men arguably suffered one of the worst results of the season so far as they were thrashed by a lowly Reims side in gameweek eight.

Prior to the clash at the Stade de la Mosson, Reims had tried and failed seven times to take all three points in Ligue 1, but the visitors put four past nine-man Montpellier, with Boulaye Dia bagging a hat-trick and Nathanael Mbuku completing the rout.

The die was cast early on as Der Zakarian lost Hilton and Damien Le Tallec to red cards before the half-time whistle, adding to an already-depleted squad for Sunday's trip to Saint-Etienne as Montpellier look to get back on track in the top flight.

Montpellier are still searching for their first away win of the season following draws with Dijon and Monaco and a loss to Rennes on their travels, and La Paillade must navigate another taxing away fixture with the defensively-sound Bordeaux following this weekend's visit to Saint-Etienne.

However, Sunday's visitors are unbeaten in their last four against Saint-Etienne, who held La Paillade to a goalless stalemate in this fixture last season before Montpellier won 1-0 at home.

Saint-Etienne Ligue 1 form: WDLLLL

Montpellier HSC Ligue 1 form: WWDLDL

Team News

Saint-Etienne are without four recognised full-backs in Mathieu Debuchy, Yvann Macon, Gabriel Silva and Miguel Trauco against Montpellier, with Sissoko set for another start despite his own goal last weekend.

However, there is better news for Puel in the heart of defence as Timothee Kolodziejczak returns from a suspension, and Harold Moukoudi is back in the fold after recovering from coronavirus.

Eighteen-year-old Saidou Sow is therefore likely to make way for the returning Kolodziejczak, but attacker Arnaud Nordin is doubtful with a toe problem.

Montpellier have a defensive crisis of their own to contend with as Hilton and Arnaud Souquet miss out through suspension, while Pedro Mendes is also unavailable having tested positive for COVID-19.

Teji Savanier and Le Tallec complete a quartet of suspensions for La Paillade, who are also without first-choice goalkeeper Jonas Omlin due to a hamstring injury.

Saint-Etienne possible starting lineup:
Moulin; Sissoko, Bestos, Kolodziejczak, Moueffek; Neyou, Camara; Monnet-Paquet, Aouchiche, Bouanga; Hamouma

Montpellier HSC possible starting lineup:
Bertaud; Congre, Cozza, Vidal; Sambia, Chotard, Ferri, Oyongo; Mollet; Laborde, Delort

We say: Saint-Etienne 1-1 Montpellier HSC

A woeful run of form coupled with a depleted squad is a recipe for disaster for any team, but given the respective troubles of these two sides, both Saint-Etienne and Montpellier will look to take advantage this weekend. The visitors in particular will be forced into a significant reshuffle, and we think Saint-Etienne will bring their losing streak to an end here, although Montpellier should do enough to nick a point.

Top betting tip

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

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