NÎMES OLYMPIQUE The match seen in Ajaccio: Corsicans under pressure
Ajaccio stays two matches without a win before receiving Nimes (Image via MAXPPP)

This Saturday at 7pm, Nîmes Olympique (7, 39 points) travels to Ajaccio (4th place, 52 points) at Stade François-Coty for the 30th day of the French Ligue 1. before this match, target gard It measures the forces present within the Corsican club.

Having suffered a qualifier defeat against Toulouse during the 2017/2018 season and denied promotion due to the pandemic in 2019/2020 by finishing twice in third place, the Ajacciens are hoping to finally find the elite they have left for eight seasons now. Mid-season hope was real after a high-flying first leg stage completed with an honorary Autumn Champion title. But in 2022, Corsicans celebrate time. “We are short on points in this comeback stage. The club has already lost four times in ten days despite only having three defeats in the first half of the season.notes Jean-Pierre Leica, a France 3 journalist who follows the ACA.

A slowdown in January with four matches without a win, which is explained by the doubling of the number of injured and the exit of four players from the African Cup of Nations, namely Youssef and Hatra with Comoros, as well as Bayala and Botoi with Burkina Faso. One of the most representative clubs on the African stage. But this season, ACA has the resources and managed to rack up three straight wins before their momentum waned at home with their loss in the derby match against Bastia (0-1) last Saturday. At the back, the draw at Quevilly-Rouen (0-0) did not reassure. “Facing these two promoted players, we only got 1 point out of a possible 12. This team has a hard time playing against the lower blocks that are waiting”Al Jazeera journalist follows.

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The best defense in Europe

A flaw that perhaps Nicholas Osau should exploit by adopting a five-man system given the number of absentees on the offensive side of Nimes. But the main problem for Olivier Pantaloni’s men is the lack of attack. “There is a severe deficit in front of goal! He is only the 15th attacker with 25 goals. It is difficult to be able to go up with that number. There have been nine 1-0 wins this season.” Ajaccio scores little but wins because this squad shows exceptional defense with only 15 goals conceded in 29 days. A defensive solidity unique in Ligue 2 and even notable in Europe where no team performs better among the top five European divisions.

Over the last two matches, possession of the ball was futile and opportunities were scarce. Then there is another factor that comes into play. “It has now been three or four games since the club unveiled its ambitions. In the truce, the goal was always to maintain, but now Ajaccio can no longer hide even if the coach has pushed back the deadline as much as possible. There may also be that pressure on the shoulders. . » With just three points off second-placed PSG, just before the break and the final run, there is no need to paint a picture to say that success against Nimes is crucial to staying connected and looking into direct promotion. Especially since Auxerre and Toulouse, who are direct competitors, face each other just before tomorrow at 3 pm.

“It’s a mandatory victory tomorrow, especially since the calendar looks more appropriate at the end of the season”, says Jean-Pierre Leica. The Corsicans must win back two of their usual starters for this showdown: Avenel and Marchetti. To be even more prolific, Ajaccio Crasso borrowed this winter, from Saint-Etienne. The striker scored two goals in seven matches. “Since his arrival, he has done a lot of good things except for facing Bastia. This is the first match he has missed. Since the first meetings, he has reactivated the attack.Corsican journalist concludes. With only 27 minutes of play in the middle of the week, the striker was saved for tomorrow, so Nim was warned.

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Possible eleven: Leroy – Joseph, Gonzalez, Avenel, Diallo – Payala, Cotadior, Marchetti, Semenani – Cortit, Krasso.

Corentin Corger

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