Lille vs Lyon Preview & Pick | Ligue 1 Odds, Betting Analysis (Mar 10)
Sylvain Lefevre/Getty. Pictured: Remy Cabella.
Lille vs Lyon Odds
|Over/Under||2.5 (-138 / -110)|
|Both Teams to Score (Yes/No)||(-163 / +120)|
|Odds via bet365. Get the latest soccer odds here.|
Both Lille and Lyon have underperformed against expectations in France this season, as each team sits outside of the top five in the Ligue 1 table.
The season is entering the stretch run, with 12 matches remaining in the double round robin. Lille are in sixth and have consistently underperformed against their underlying numbers for the last 1.5 seasons since winning the league title in a stunning upset of PSG.
Lyon are on their second manager of the season after they fired Peter Bosz in October and turned to former PSG head man Laurent Blanc. The results haven’t really improved and the underlying numbers have been just okay.
The team is typically competing in European competitions and in the French top four, but that’s pretty much out of the question as Lyon sit in 10th and 12 points behind fourth place in the league.
Lille have the considerably better underlying numbers overall and the much sturdier defense. With Les Dogues at home, the market is undervaluing them as just a short -110 moneyline favorite.
Lille Succeeding in a Unique Way
When Lille won the league title, they primarily did so because of their defense. The 2022-23 version of Lille has a lot more attacking firepower because of the breakout season for Jonathan David at striker.
The 22-year old Canadian posted solid numbers last season with 15 goals and 0.47 xG per 90. This season, he’s taken the leap to elite striker production. Only two players have more shots than him in Ligue 1 — Kylian Mbappé and Lionel Messi. He’s produced 0.70 xG per 90 and 0.88 xG + xA and has 16 goals in 23 matches.
As a result of David’s improvement, Lille have the second-most xG in the French top division, behind only PSG. Lille have the second-best pass completion rate in the entire league and the best field tilt numbers. That’s a major key in this matchup because Lyon are a team that plays a very frenetic pressing style aimed at disrupting opponent possession.
Lyon have the lowest passes per defensive action in all of Ligue 1 and they’ve forced the most high turnovers. Playing a high line defensively against David is quite the risk given his pace and ability to receive the ball running into space behind the defense.
Lille lost the reverse fixture in Lyon, 1-0, but outshot Lyon 15-6 and had 12 more touches in the attacking penalty area than Lyon did.
Lyon Facing Even More Regression
Lyon’s decision to fire Peter Bosz was premature in hindsight, even though they were winless in five games. You can divide up Lyon’s season into the pre-and-post Bosz splits. While he was manager, they had the fifth-best xG difference in the league if you remove penalties and only include 11-on-11 minutes. The defense had some holes in the press, but the attack was third-best at creating chances in the early portion of the season.
The results would have turned around if Lyon kept playing at that level. They fired him, brought in Blanc and haven’t really changed their per game output. The attack has regressed a bit and the defense has improved marginally, but they’re now sixth in xG difference per 90 with the same caveats applied.
Lyon have had average shot stopping this season, yet their defense has over-performed xG by 14% this year. Almost all of that is due to teams missing good scoring chances with poor shooting against them. Given their style is built around pressing and that they concede average shot quality in general, there’s nothing in their profile that suggests the defense will continue to run this well.
Lille vs Lyon Pick
You can take penalties and non-11-on-11 minutes from the season-long sample of these two teams to generate a net xG difference per 90 for each team. There’s more that goes into a power rating for a soccer team, but it’s a good start. Lille have a +0.6 xG difference per 90, but due to mediocre finishing variance at both ends of the pitch, Les Dogues have a +0.3 goal difference per 90 this year.
Lyon’s numbers are marginally worse across the board — they have a +0.31 xG difference and have conceded well below their xGA this season. Lyon will press and try to disrupt Lille’s possession structure, but playing a high line against David is a recipe to get beat in behind multiple times.
Lille have outplayed Lyon in the league and in the cup away from home this year. Now coming home, they should take all three points. I’d bet Lille ML at -120 or better.
Pick: Lille ML (-120 or better)
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