The hosts are at full strength so will be confident of getting a good result. Pre-season performances and results have been mixed but there is plenty of optimism about Montpellier’s chances given that they did well during the second-half of last season. They will go into the opening game of the season with a strong squad, but there is a small doubt over whether Vanden Borre will start. The coaching staff are questioning whether he is fit enough to play for 90 minutes after arriving midway through pre-season. But he is undoubtedly a better option than Deplagne so may be rushed into action. In all other positions Montpellier will be at full strength or close to full strength. They have used a 4-4-2 and a 4-2-3-1 in pre-season and both are options here. Expect an attacking approach. Coach Hantz generally likes his sides to get forward. He will want to see Montpellier win home games like these against sides of comparable quality such as Angers.
Angers will be keen to make a good start having done so last season and seen how important that could be for having a good season. They are below-strength in midfield as two of their ideal starting trio from last season, Saiss and Mangani, have been ruled out. Given how important the midfield platform was, this is a serious blow. Letellier has also been ruled out. Those absentees, plus the summer changes in attack, with two big new signings, mean an unfamiliar and under-strength side will take to the field. Certainly they would see a draw as a good result against a Montpellier side that finished 2015-16 strongly. With a point an acceptable outcome, they will play accordingly to get atleast a draw.
Verdict & Prediction
Montpellier enjoyed a much improved second-half of 2015-16. Fans and local media are optimistic that Montpellier will enjoy a better 2016-17 overall. With home advantage on their side, they should be able to win against Angers. I recommend a low stake on Montpellier.
Prediction : Montpellier -0.50 AH
Odds : 2.04 188Bet