The second weekend of action in Ligue 1 is set to begin on Friday. Following the conclusion of the UEFA Champions League, Olympique Lyonnais will begin their domestic season. Paris Saint-Germain will remain absent from the French league fixtures as they recover from their final match against Bayern Munich.
Three Fixtures in Ligue 1 to Watch on Matchday Two
Olympique Lyonnais v Dijon FCO
After a surprising run to the Champions League semi-finals, Lyon will begin their Ligue 1 season against Dijon. Lyon finished in seventh place in the Ligue 1 table last season as they fell from the top of the table. Lyon will be looking to move back up to the Champions League places in the 2020/21 season.
Defeating clubs such as Juventus and Manchester City should have given the club confidence that they can return to the top three spots in Ligue 1. They displayed they are capable of producing results against some of Europe’s top clubs.
Dijon have the opportunity to spoil Lyon’s opening match of the Ligue 1 season. They lost a close match to Angers SCO on matchday one and will be in search of their first points of the season.
Lyon have a chance to show the rest of the league they are a real contender to challenge for the Champions League places this season. If they can soundly defeat Dijon it will signal their performance in the Champions League was not an anomaly.
Reims FC v Lille OSC
Neither Reims nor Lille were able to earn their first victory of the season on matchday one. These two clubs finished in the top half of the table last season and are contenders to challenge for the European places once more.
Reims’ strong defensive record from last season was not on display against Monaco as they allowed two goals in their draw with Niko Kovac’s side. After allowing the fewest goals of any club in the 2019/20 campaign, they did not show their normal defensive ability. Lille have a wealth of talent on the attack and could cause further trouble for Reims.
The debut goal for Jonathan David did not come in Lille’s match against Rennes. The recent signing had an impressive goal-scoring record in Belgium and will be looking to translate his success for France’s top flight. In a match that could be closely contested, David may have the opportunity to be the main difference-maker.
AS Saint-Etienne v Lorient FC
Saint-Etienne were originally supposed to begin their season last weekend against Marseille. However, the match was postponed to a later date due to positive coronavirus tests. As a result, their match against Lorient will be their opening fixture of the season.
Lorient were an impressive side in their first match against Strasbourg. The newly-promoted side won comfortably to take all three points. A similar performance against Saint-Etienne would certainly be a surprise and a huge result for them. They may just be the surprise package of the 2020/21 season.
After finishing in 17th place last season, Saint-Etienne went in the wrong direction following a fourth-place finish in the 2018/19 season. They went from contending for a Champions League place to avoiding relegation in a single season. It will be important for them to take points from these matches against the newly promoted sides as they hope to move their way back up the table.