Ligue 1 Matchday Nine Preview: Insights, Predictions and Top Scorers

Ligue 1 Matchday Nine Preview: Insights, Predictions and Top Scorers

Ero Samson
updated at October 21, 2023 at 7:33 PM
In this article:
French Ligue 1 logo
FRA Ligue 1
Kylian Mbappé logo
Paris Saint Germain (PSG) logoFFrance logo
Ousmane Dembélé logo
Paris Saint Germain (PSG) logoFFrance logo
  • The French Ligue 1 takes centre stage following the return of club football
  • Paris Saint-Germain will be looking to improve on their wobbly start to the season
  • Monaco faces a defensive crisis as they look to extend their lead at the summit of the table

The action in French Ligue 1 takes the spotlight once again as club football returns. In this upcoming match round, we have some intriguing matchups.

Luis Enrique and his somewhat inconsistent Paris Saint-Germain side will be looking to improve their track record against Patrick Vieira's Strasbourg, who have proven to be a formidable opponent in their recent encounters. The reigning Ligue 1 champions will rely on the remarkable skills of forward Kylian Mbappe as they aim to secure a victory at the Parc des Princes.

Ligue 1, Mbappe, PSG, Terem Moffi,  Monaco
Kylian Mbappe, Wissam Ben Yedder and Terem Moffi will be looking to propel their teams to victory this weekend. Image: Neal Simpson.
Source: Getty Images

On the other hand, league leaders Monaco are set to face the basement strugglers Metz at the Stade Louis II. Despite dealing with a slew of injuries and suspensions, Adi Hutter's team will draw confidence from their recent history, having emerged victorious in 11 out of the last 15 meetings between the two sides, according to data from Fotmob.

The headline fixture of this ninth match round in the French League will be held at the Allianz Riviera, where the highflying OGC Nice will host Marseille, now under the management of former Milan midfielder Gennaro Gattuso. Previous encounters between these teams have been closely contested, with Marseille holding a slight edge in their head-to-head record. Marseille has secured victory in 14 of their last 28 clashes, while Nice has emerged triumphant on ten occasions.

Turning our focus to the present day, both Nigeria's Terrem Moffi and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have had remarkable starts to the season, and we can anticipate a deluge of goals when these two teams clash.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, Lyon, who find themselves in unfamiliar and challenging circumstances, will be eager to clinch their first victory of the season under the guidance of new manager Fabio Grosso as they host the league's bottom-ranked team, Clermont-Foot.

Ligue 1 leading scorers

Topping the charts is captain and France international Mbappe, who leads the pack with seven goals, despite not starting the season.

As reported by ESPN, closely trailing him is Nigeria's Akor Admas from Montpellier, who has found the back of the net five times in eight appearances this season. France's veteran striker, Wissam Ben Yedder, and Egypt's Mostafa Mohammed also share the second spot with five goals each. Completing the top five goal scorers for the league as we head into the weekend is Le Havre's Nabil Alioui. The 24-year-old striker currently has four goals in eight appearances this season.

Why Mbappe deserves Ballon d’Or

Earlier, Sports Brief reported that there seems to be a general consensus on social media that it is only a matter of time before Lionel Messi is awarded the 2023 Ballon d'Or title.

The October 30 ceremony, set to happen at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, will provide a platform for the 36-year-old prodigy to land the eighth award of his acclaimed career.

If Messi is going to run the Ballon d'Or narrative and eventually win it on the sole basis of winning the World Cup, then Mbappe deserves to finish right behind him.

Ero Samson photo
Ero Samson
Samson Ero is a sports journalist with a track record of over five years in the Nigerian media industry. He graduated from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (2021-2023).