Unbeaten in their first 5 matches, Bordeaux visited Toulouse at the Stadium Municipal. Toulouse aligned numerous players to be on the lookout for, including GK Alban Lafont, CB Issa Dip and RM Corentin Jean. Andy Delort and Giannelli Imbula accompanied them on the field. As for Bordeaux, more of the same. A 4-3-3 with Costil in goal, Toulalan as a CB, Malcom and Francois Kamano on the wings, and recently arrived Nicolas de Preville as the focal point in attack.
The match started off extremely levelled, with a vast amount of shots for both sides. Both Costil and Lafont had to be on their toes from the start. The first half ended with a slightly better Bordeaux, however they never really dominated the home side. The score remained 0-0. Costil was more decisive, applying his composure and experience to stop some dangerous chances for Toulouse. Defont was very correct as well, although he showed some doubts on deciding when to leave his goal to win an aerial duel. It wasn’t until the 69th minute when Malcom opened the score with a cracking left shot that went off the post and in. Such screamer was assisted by Kamano, after he danced with a defender before giving the final pass. The match ended 1-0, with Malcom’s rocket into the top corner being the difference. Bordeaux took 3 tough points home, as Jocelyn Gourvennec’s side is off to a fantastic start to the campaign. They are unbeaten with 3 wins and 3 draws which locate them in 4th place with 12 points. Toulouse, on the other hand, are 13th with 7 points.
Monaco, having suffered a staggering defeat by 4-0 against Nice last weekend, hosted recently promoted Strasbourg. Leonardo Jardim played his usual 4-4-2. After doing a fine job in the Champions League away against Leipzig, Benaglio saw his first Ligue 1 minutes for Monaco in this match. Sidibe and Jorge were the assigned full-backs. Rachid Ghezzal and Rony Lopes altered their roles on the wings, with both occasionally participating on the opposite side of the field. Young Youri Tielemans had quality minutes in the middle, while Stevan Jovetic had a relatively weak match joining Falcao as a striking force. The Colombian is currently undergoing his best goal per game ratio as a professional. Prior to the match, 7 goals in 5 Ligue 1 matches placed Falcao at the top of the scoring leaders in France.
After a dominant beginning to the match, Monaco opened the score via Rony Lopes. Ghezzal played a perfect through pass to Falcao, for the Colombian to assist his teammate with a ground cross. Falcao himself would double the lead in the 51st minute. Brazilian left-back Jorge had the assist with a clever cross following a pacey run down the left. Eight minutes later, Stevan Jovetic was subbed off for Keita Balde, who entered the match with electric pace and immense physical presence. After that point, it was all Monaco and no Strasbourg. The recently promoted side struggled to enter Monaco’s half, while the French champions simply kept going forward. Falcao scored the concluding 3-0 following a gigantic defensive mistake. With this goal, the Colombian reached an unthinkable 9 goals in 6 fixtures.
The match ended with a comfortable 3-0 win for the ‘Monegascos’. They are 2nd with 15 points after 6 matches, while Strasbourg account for a horrendous start to the campaign. They are 19th with just 4 points.
Amiens hosted Rudi Garcia’s Marseille for the 6th fixture of French football. Both sides commenced with the same formation: a 4-2-3-1. Garcia emphasized the constant participation of his full-backs Jordan Amavi and Hiroki Sakai. They provided width during the whole match, leaving interior damage to Payet, Lucas Ocampos, and Florian Thauvin. They operated in both half-spaces and in the central axis. Cameroonian Clinton N’Jie played as a solitary striker, giving the away side aerial dominance and quick mobility.
The first half unfortunately did not go the fan’s way. More kicks than football took place, as Amiens’ strategy seemed to be to stop the game often. Marseille, upon such kicks, turned violent themselves. Four yellow cards in the first 45 minutes depicted how slow the first half was. For the second half, Marseille luckily decided to be protagonists with the ball at their possession. They looked like a completely different side in the second half, as Sakai and Amavi began running at the oppositions full-backs. Sakai assisted N’Jie for the match opener after a quick break-away down the right before whipping in a cross that found the Cameroonian after a deflection. Just 2 minutes later, Thauvin found N’Jie free in the box after a brilliant diagonal run. Marseille were then at a comfortable 0-2 in the 53rd minute, as they simply cruised through the rest of the match with relative ease. The match ended with an 0-2, as the away side walked away from the Stade de la Licorne with 3 points. Marseille are 6th with 10 points, while Amiens are 14th with 6 points.
Following a perfect start in Ligue 1 and a dominant performance against Celtic in Scotland, PSG faced Lyon at the Parc des Princes. Alphonese Areola started in goal, while Brazilian duo Dani Alves and Thiago Silva commanded the defense. Emery decided to opt for a 4-2-3-1, varying from his usual possession based 4-3-3. Rabiot and Motta played as a double line in midfield, followed by a line of 3 consisting of Draxler, Mbappe, and Neymar. Last season’s Ligue 1 top goal scorer Edinson Cavani played as a solitary striker. Bruno Genesio also aligned his regular 4-2-3-1, with Anthony Lopes in goal, and Ferland Mendy and Kenny Tete as full-backs. Both youngsters have an interesting future, Tete coming from Ajax and Mendy from famous talent producer Le Havre. The youth didn’t stop for Lyon, as they started Tousart, Fekir and Traore. Ex-Real Madrid man Mariano Diaz had an unprecise night up top.
PSG faced their toughest rival in the new Ligue 1 campaign, and as expected, they were protagonists with the ball. Lyon played a solid low-block, leading much of PSG’s high possession number (70%) to be in areas of little to no danger. Lyon, who are not a side known for their good low-block, defended extremely well compared to their standards. Lyon’s low possession number did not mean they didn’t look to score often. In fact, PSG had just 2 more shots than Lyon in the match, 14 to 12. The 0-0 draw would remain until the 75th minute, when Edinson Cavani opened the score off a deflected shot. He would then miss a penalty, which he discussed with Neymar over the taker of such. Jeremy Morel would score an own goal in the 86th minute for the conclusive 2-0. PSG ended taking an important win to add to their perfect start to the campaign. They have 18 points that situate them at the top of the table. Their next Ligue 1 match is against Montpellier after facing European giants Bayern Munich in the Champions League.
Troyes 0-1 Montpellier
Nantes 1-0 Caen
Guingamp 1-0 Lille
Dijon 0-1 Saint Etienne
Rennes 0-1 Nice
Angers 0-1 Metz