Valenciennes vs Evian
Valenciennes is coming from a 2:2 draw away to Rennes last weekend away from home, as it seemed that the team really benefited from a coach change as Ariel Jacobs took over the team during previous midweek. It was second consecutive draw for them, while the team faced hard times as they didn't get a single victory since a season opener and 3:0 win over Toulouse at home.
Having no victories for so long, surely has affected the team and their position at the table as Valenciennes currently stands at the bottom of the table with only five points earned till now, but still being alive in a relegation battle as they are only two points away from the safely placed teams. Particularly encouraging was their draw at Rennes, as the visitors were 2:0 down twenty five minutes before the final whistle, but didn't give up and overall, showed better performance than their hosts and were at least a bit closer to get the three pointer. As for Valenciennes, they will try to search for their first victory in two months with an improved psychology coming from a draw at difficult ground. Home side will miss forward Pujol (5/1) and defender Lala (8/0), while important defensive midfielder Ducourtioux (7/0) comes back into the team from injury.
Evian suffered another defeat last weekend, as they welcomed Guingamp and went down with a 1:2 result, mostly thanks to their defensive gaps they have all season long. Even though they took the lead in the first halftime, they stood without even a point earned as the visitors scored two goals within four minutes (in 74th and 78th minute) for the final victory.
It was second consecutive defeat for the guests, who previously lost easily with a 3:0 score away to Nantes. Without a victory in last five matches, they lost the advantage they got with positive results at the beginning of the season and are now close to the relegation zone with nine points earned till now, which is only two more than relegation worried teams. With nineteen goals conceded they have the second worst defensive lineup in Ligue 1 and it's obvious it's the part of the team that will need improvement during Winter transfer period as the team didn't succeed to keep the clean sheet in any of this season's games. One of their best players, forward Berigaud (10/6) is out with a tight injury today, while the visitors also can't count at first choice goalkeeper Laguait (8/0), central defender Mensah (8/0) and right defender Dja Djedje (5/1) for tonight's game.
Valenciennes' game has improved lately and if the team enters the match with anything close to what they did away to Rennes, there is no doubt that out of form and poor travelers from Evian will have a very hard time staying undefeated tonight.