Visiting Reims closed out 2021 by losing just one of PSG’s last seven Ligue 1 matches, an impressive turnaround which has propelled Oscar Garcia’s side several points clear of the relegation battle.
After picking up eight points across their first four 2021/22 Ligue 1 matchdays following promotion to the French top flight for the first time, Clermont Foot have since claimed just nine from their following 14 matches and are being dragged into the relegation dogfight. To make matters worse, they’ll be without topscorer Mohamed Bayo for this vital clash with Reims as he makes his way to AFCON to represent Guinea. That’s a major concern as the pacey forward has netted 45 per cent of Clermont’s Ligue 1 goals this campaign, yet despite that, the home side remain one of the competition’s lowest scoring outfits averaging just 1.11 goals per match. A defensive approach might be favourable in this clash then, especially as all four of Clermont’s top-flight victories this season have been accompanied by a clean sheet!
Visiting Reims closed out 2021 by losing just one of their last seven Ligue 1 matches, an impressive turnaround which has propelled Oscar Garcia’s side several points clear of the relegation battle. Another victory here could possibly even push them into European qualification contention, a result that appears likely considering recent competitive H2H history. One of those H2H wins came in the reverse fixture (1-0), although Reims haven’t done the double over any promoted side in Ligue 1 since 1977/78! They’ll also be without four AFCON-bound first-team players which will cause additional concern, especially as they’ve only won one of their previous seven Ligue 1 away outings, albeit impressively Reims did score first in each of the last five.
With topscorer Bayo missing, Clermont could rely on Elbasan Rashani who has four league strikes this season – all were scored during the second half. Reims’ Hugo Ekitike has eight Ligue 1 strikes this campaign, of which four came beyond the 70th minute. Reims’ last five competitive outings have witnessed five red cards!