Ligue 1 Tips: Monaco ready to shine on Sunday while Angers' woes set to continue

After making another profit on his selections last weekend James Eastham picks out the best bets ahead of the latest round of matches in France's top flight...

Underrated Nice the smart selection

Bordeaux vs Nice (13th vs 10th)
Sun, 12:00 BST
Live on BT Sport 3 and Betfair Live Video

This game is a meeting of two teams as unimpressive as each other in recent weeks so the large price on Nice makes the visitors the side to support.

Bordeaux are 2.18 to win with Nice 3.80 and The Draw 3.25 and those odds make little sense given that Bordeaux have been as inadequate as Nice in recent outings.

Jean-Louis Gasset's Bordeaux were outplayed and beaten 2-1 at Lens last weekend and have also featured in two fairly uneventful 0-0 draws, against Lyon and Nantes. Their only win in four fixtures to date was a 2-0 victory away to an unimpressive Angers side and it's obvious new manager Gasset is still getting to grips with a squad that appears to have only mid-table potential.

Having started the season with consecutive victories Nice have lost their last two, conceding three goals each time: they went down 3-1 at Montpellier and then lost 3-0 at home to PSG last weekend.

Some Nice fans are already questioning the competence of manager Patrick Vieira. Whatever the strengths and weaknesses of the former Arsenal midfielder, it's clear that the Nice squad has greater potential than that of Bordeaux. Man for man Nice are more talented than Bordeaux in most positions and have good team news heading into the weekend.

Nice will need to play with greater intensity and aggression than in their last two outings - but if they do that they ought to avoid defeat at least. By supporting the visitors on the Draw No Bet market of the Asian Handicap market with our 0 selection you'll make money if Nice win and get your stakes back if the game ends all-square.

More misery on cards for Angers

Angers vs Brest (11th vs 9th)
Sun, 14:00 BST
Live on Betfair Live Video

We were happy to oppose Angers last weekend and we were successful in doing so as Montpellier ran out 4-1 winners over Stephane Moulin's beleaguered visitors. And we're happy to take a similar stance this weekend as form and team news continues to count against Angers.

Baptiste Santamaria - arguably Angers' best player - recently joined Bundesliga side Freiburg for £9 million and the departure of the holding midfielder has left a hole Montpellier that expertly exploited last Sunday. Free-scoring Brest are capable of doing the same thing as they have strengthened their forward line in recent weeks.

Steve Mounie (pictured above) netted a debut goal for Brest in their 3-2 win over Lorient last weekend following his £4.5 million move from Huddersfield Town and Brest have further improved their options by adding energetic winger Romain Philippoteaux from Nimes this week.

On the eve of the current campaign Brest manager Olivier Dall'Oglio declared his squad was already stronger than last season's (when Brest finished 14th) and he now has a roster of eight attackers - the aforementioned duo, plus Ivan Cardona, Gaetan Charbonnier, Heriberto Tavares, Franck Honorat, Romain Faivre and Jeremy Le Doaron - to pick from.

Angers are as short as 2.10 which makes little sense given the energy and quality of Brest's recent attacking performances, the strength in depth they now possess up front and Angers' aforementioned problems. Laying the hosts is the smart selection on a game where Angers' chances are overrated.

Kovac's hosts to impress again

Monaco vs Strasbourg (6th vs 18th)
Sun, 14:00 BST
Live on BT Sport 3 and Betfair Live Video

Monaco suffered their first defeat of the season at Rennes (1-2) last weekend but the Principality outfit have played well enough under new manager Niko Kovac across the first four matchdays of the season to be a strong shout at home to struggling Strasbourg.

At the start of the season new Monaco sporting director Paul Mitchell said he wanted to see the side play aggressive, front-foot football and Monaco have lived up to that particular demand. There's plenty of pace and power from the full-back positions, the midfield is a seductive blend of guile and strength thanks to the combination of Cesc Fabregas and France youth international Aurelien Tchouameni, and Monaco's ever-improving options up front are the reason why they should collect all three points here.

Monaco have scored in all four of their games to date and have excellent final-third options. France international Wissam Ben Yedder is on course to be one of Ligue 1's top scorers yet again and can call upon a supporting cast that includes £14 million man Kevin Volland, signed from Bayer Leverkusen, and Willem Geubbels, the 19-year-old that recently scored his first Ligue 1 goal and after two injury-riddled years may be about to show why Monaco paid Lyon £18 million to sign him when he was just 16 years of age.

Little in Strasbourg's form suggests they will be able to put up meaningful resistance. After three straight defeats they finally claimed their first win of the season last weekend but their largely unimpressive 1-0 defeat of a Dijon side that rank as arguably the weakest in Ligue 1 so far hardly inspires confidence.

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