Ligue 1 Betting: Marseille the smart pick to extend dazzling run of form
Andre Villas-Boas' side are an excellent bet to take another step towards claiming runners-up spot in the French top flight, writes James Eastham...
In-form hosts to triumph again
Marseille vs Amiens (2nd vs 19th) Live on BT Sport 3 and Betfair Live Video Fri, 20:00 GMT
The difference in form and class between these two sides is considerable, making this fixture a terrific chance to back Marseille at large odds. Andre Villas-Boas' hosts are 1.60, an excellent price considering how good they are and how poor Amiens are.
Marseille are W12-D3-L1 since last October and bounced back from their only recent defeat - 3-1 at home to Nantes a fortnight ago - by winning 3-2 at Nimes last weekend. Marseille have excellent team news, too: their regular Starting XI is available and France international Florian Thauvin (pictured below) has been named in the squad for the first time in six months after recovering from an ankle injury. Dario Benedetto is the other man to look out for: he hit a hat-trick in the win over Nimes last weekend, taking him to 11 Ligue 1 goals for the season.
Amiens manager Luka Elsner is under immense pressure as his side are without a win in 15 matches (W0-D6-L9). Five points from safety, Amiens suffered a serious blow when they lost 1-0 at home to relegation rivals Metz last weekend.
If the 1.60 on a Marseille victory is too short for you, there are other ways to back the hosts. The Asian Handicap is one option: Marseille are available at evens with a -1.0 start. With this selection, you'll get your stakes back if Marseille win by a single goal and make a profit if they win by two or more goals. For a full guide to Asian Handicap betting, click here.
Dijon vs Toulouse (17th vs 20th) Live on Betfair Live Video Sat, 19:00 GMT
Only three places separate these two sides in the Ligue 1 standings but the difference in quality and motivation is bigger than those positions suggest.
Dijon have 27 points and Toulouse just 13. These tallies are a better guide to how the game is likely to unfold. While Dijon remain upbeat, Toulouse looked doomed: on to their third manager of the season, Toulouse are on a truly dreadful run of 16 defeats from their last 17 Ligue 1 matches, having failed to score in their last seven. To make matters worse for the visitors, first-choice midfield duo Ibrahim Sangare and William Vainqueur are suspended this weekend.
Dijon have more to play for and are in better form: excluding games against PSG, their 2020 Ligue 1 record is a decent W2-D3-L2, including a victory over high-flying Lille (1-0) and draws against higher-ranking sides Monaco (1-1), Bordeaux (2-2) and Nantes (3-3).
With virtually all factors pointing towards a Dijon win it's a surprise they're as big as 1.95 to collect all three points. This game is a tremendous opportunity for the hosts to improve their chances of avoiding relegation. Back them to get the job done versus down-and-out visitors with little to play for.