Our football match prediction:
Thanks to a 1-1 draw with Montpellier Olympique Marseille extended their unbeaten run in Ligue 1 to eleven games, but they need to return to winning ways as soon as possible if they are to stay in the race for the title. OM are nine points behind the league leaders in the Ligue 1 standings and we predict the star-studded team will go all-out attack against Saint-Etienne. Les Verts made a flying start to the season, but they do not seem to be on top of their game ahead of the trip to Marseille. Les Verts failed to win previous seven games in the French elite division and they are unlikely to spoil OM’s party at Stade Velodrome. Florian Thauvin extended his goal-scoring run at the weekend and the pacey winger is likely to prove a handful for the opposition defenders. When the two teams met in Marseille last season Olympique crushed Saint-Etienne 4-0.
Highlighted Player (Hiroki Sakai):
Hiroki Sakai is a product of Kashiwa Reysol football academy and, as expected, he made his first-team debut with the Hitachi Kashiwa Soccer Stadium outfit. Sakai played his first ever match for Kashiwa against Kofu (1-1) on May 5, 2010 and during the 2011 season he established himself as a first-team regular. The pacey right back made 27 appearances for Kashiva in the 2011 season and he remained at the club until the summer of 2012. Hiroki Sakai then played for Hannover (2012-2016) and he scored two goals in 92 appearances in the league for the Bundesliga club. In 2016 he joined Marseille and he played regularly for OM in the 2016/2017 Ligue 1 campaign (35 appearances). Sakai was born in Kashiva on April 12, 1990 and 22 years later he made his senior debut for Japan, playing 45 minutes in a 2-0 win over Azerbaijan. It has to be noted that the Marseille footballer has 17 caps for Japan U23 team as well.
Highlighted Team (St Etienne):
Saint Etienne are a professional football club that compete in French Ligue 1. Les Verts were founded in 1919 by employees of a grocery store chain based in Saint Etienne. Saint Etienne wear green shirts and white shorts when playing at home ground and they play their home matches at Stade Geofrroy-Guichard. The stadium was opener on 13 September, 1931 and following the renovation the capacity of the venue increased to 42 000. In 1981 les Verts won their tenth Ligue 1 trophy, but they have been in the shadow of Ligue 1 giants Lyon and PSG in the 21st century. Speaking of the club’s European success, Saint Etienne made it to the European Cup (Champions League) final in 1976, but Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich proved to be a big catch for the French outfit. Anyhow, that is regarded as the club’s biggest success. It has to be noted that the likes of Michel Platini, Jacques Santini, Laurent Blanc and Aime Jacquet all played for Saint Etienne in the past.