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Jan 22, 2022 at 4pm UK
Djalo (3' og.), Mounie (90+5' pen.)
Mounie (11'), Agoume (27')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Yilmaz (54'), Mandava (57'), Sanches (58')

Preview: Brest vs. Lille - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Brest vs. Lille - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Ligue 1 clash between Brest and Lille, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Reigning champions Lille travel west to Stade Francis-Le Ble to take on Brest in Ligue 1 action on Saturday afternoon.

The visitors have been clawing their way back towards the European spots in recent weeks, whilst the hosts are stuck in the bottom half and without a win in four.

Match preview

Brest are currently 13th in the Ligue 1 table, which actually puts them on course for their best finish since returning to the top flight in 2019.

Having survived relegation via the playoff last campaign, Brest fans may have feared the worst when head coach Michel Der Zakarian's reign began with no wins in their first 11 league games.

A 2-0 win over Nice at Halloween sparked them into life, however, beginning a run of six straight victories and culminating in an impressive away win at high-flying Marseille.

The wheels have somewhat fallen off again, though, with three losses in their last four games, including a fairly routine 2-0 win for Paris Saint-Germain last time out.

Der Zakarian will hope it will not take 12 attempts to rediscover winning form again this time, but his side must beat the resurgent champions if they are to claim three points this weekend.

Lille were another side to suffer a less-than-ideal start to their 2021-22 Ligue 1 campaign, with just a single victory from their opening six games meaning their title defence was over before it had really begun.

Jocelyn Gourvennec and his team have gelled over the course of the first half of the season, though, and are now on an unbeaten run of nine games in the league, stretching back to a 2-1 loss at the Parc des Princes in October.

Les Dogues enjoyed a straightforward win at home to struggling Lorient on Wednesday, goals from Isaac Lihadji, Reinildo and a Lorient own goal meaning the tie was all but wrapped up by half time.

Those recent results have seen Gourvennec's side climb to eighth in the table, and they are now just three points shy of the Champions League spots - something that seemed unimaginable a few months back.

Of course, there is the possibility they will not even need to finish in the top four to qualify, having stormed through to finish top of their group in this year's competition.

They took a while to arrive but there are now certainly positive signs in the Lille camp this campaign.

Brest Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L

Brest form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L

Lille Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • W

Lille form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • W

Team News

Brest's Steve Mounie was surprisingly left on the bench against the leaders last weekend, but should be back alongside Jeremy Le Douaron in a front two on Saturday.

Romain Del Castillo and Sebastien Cibois remain out with groin and achilles injuries respectively, whilst Denys Bain remains a doubt having missing the last game with COVID-19.

Hatem Ben Arfa has made Lille his seventh French club - and 10th overall - joining from Bordeaux this week and could come straight into the matchday squad if not the starting XI.

Whilst the former Newcastle United cult hero has come in, Yusuf Yazici has gone in the opposite direction - at least temporarily - having joined CSKA Moscow on loan.

Benjamin Andre returns from suspension and the veteran will most likely slot straight back into the midfield four.

Brest possible starting lineup:
Bizot; Pierre-Gabriel, Brassier, Herelle, Duverne; Faivre, Magnetti, Agoume, Honorat; Mounie, Douaron

Lille possible starting lineup:
Grbic; Celik, Fonte, Botman, Reinildo; Sanches, Andre, Xeka, Bamba; David, Yilmaz

We say: Brest 1-2 Lille

Whilst Brest will be desperate to return to winning ways - and will have home advantage - Lille have rediscovered some of the form that took them to a shock title last year, and we think they will have too much for Les Pirates on this occasion.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 2.5 goals 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.Over 2.5:data

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