2013/14 Ligue 1 Matchday 1 Preview

Today's big question...will Lisandro's departure hurt Lyon?

Today’s big question…will Lisandro’s departure hurt Lyon?

Well, with the long awaited season upon us, it is time to pull out the jerseys, find those internet streams we haven’t used in the last few weeks, fire up the DVRs for the games we want to watch later and crack out the French-English dictionaries because Ligue 1 season is finally here. Gone are all of the preseason games that mean nothing, as well as the hype around only two teams. Now we are at the point where those “mega teams” need to prove themselves.

Of course, the transfer market this summer makes Ligue 1 a much different looking league than we had before. One of the newly promoted teams is vying for a Champions League spot. Some of the smaller teams have brought in really good talent. Other teams have lost a lot of their players in the summer, and questions remain on how they will perform this season.

So, with Matchday 1, what should we expect?
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2011-12 Ligue 1 Predictions: 14th through 9th place.

Now time to continue our Ligue 1 preview for teams that I predict will finish 9th to 14th place. Here we go.

14 – Nancy: Yes, for years and years, everyone talks about how Nancy should be relegated. They aren’t in the most exciting market in France. They might be located in the middle of nowhere. But still, they have been able to stay in France’s top flight during years in which relegation seemed certain.

Going into this year, one could easily put Nancy in the relegation zone yet again. As far as the transfer market, Nancy didn’t really do anything. In fact, they lost Julien Feret and Alfred N’Diaye, which will hurt a little. But as far as transfers coming in, Nancy mostly went with younger players that the jury is still out on. They were able to retain Alexandre Cuvillier from loan, but that was about it.

But there was one big pick up for Nancy, and that is coach Jean Fernandez. After leaving Auxerre, it was a safe bet around Ligue 1 circles that Fernandez was going to go to Bordeaux, a team in which he played for two-year. Instead, his move to Nancy was both a shock and a head-scratcher in football circles. Does he know something that we don’t? Nevertheless, he has always had the eye to find some stunning talent and turn them into superstars. Is that what he is going to do at Nancy?
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Ligue 1 Talk interview with Evian keeper Quentin Westberg.

Quentin Westberg's arrival at Evian this season.

Earlier today, Ligue 1 Talk was able interview French-born American goalkeeper Quentin Westberg of Ligue 2 title contenders Evian.

In the interview, we talked about Quentin’s training in the youth academies in France, which includes impressive places like Camp des Loges and Clairefontaine. He was also featured in “A la Clairefontaine” as well.

In addition we talked about American players in France, the MLS, playing for the US Men’s National Team and the Boston Red Sox. Also, we both agreed to bash the New York Yankees.

Please forgive us for any audio problems. It wasn’t noticeable while we were recording. So my apologies in advanced.
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Friday’s Ligue 2 Recap: High scoring day changes nothing.

In a high scoring Friday, which saw 35 goals scored, the Ligue 2 standings pretty much remained unchanged.

At the top of the table, Evian were able to continued their winning ways against ESTAC by a score of 3-0. American Quentin Westberg started in goal for Evian and collected the clean sheet.  Youssef Adnane added his 8th goal of the season as well, as Evian saw some offensive production from their defenders, as Brice Djadjedje and Aldo Angoula also scored for Evian.

ESTAC, who were promoted from the Championnat National last year, are still not out of the woods yet regarding the Ligue 2 survival. But even with the humiliating loss on the road, they are still in a position of advantage in the relegation fight.
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French Cup “Team of the Round” for Round of 64.

Every week in many competitions, there is usually a “Team of the Week”. And starting this weekend with the Ligue 1 matches, we will be doing a “Ligue 1 Team of the Week”. And since French Cup action just concluded, we would like to do a Round of 64 Team as well. Of course, with so many teams playing this past weekend, one can easily argue for a number of players. Still, here is Ligue 1 Talk’s “Team of the Round of 64”.
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