A big month of April looms !
During the month of April, Les Rouge et Noir will play six matches, half of which will be against teams in the top half of the Ligue 1 Uber Eats table. Here's a snapshot of the penultimate stretch of the 2021-2022 season, also looking at the schedule of the other European contenders.
A HEAVYWEIGHT CLASH TO START
Fourth-placed OGC Nice will host third-place Stade Rennais FC on Saturday, 2 April, at 17:00. Recently eliminated from the Europa Conference League by Leicester, Bruno Génésio's men beat FC Metz (6-1) in their last Ligue 1 Uber Eats outing. This victory allowed them to overtake Dante and his teammates, defeated in Marseille (2-1), on the table. The Bretons, on a run of five league wins, now have a two-point lead over Nice (52 points against 50). In short, this clash for Europe will see the league's best defence (Nice, 23 goals conceded) against its best attack (Rennes, 63 goals scored).
rEnnes, WHAT A SCHEDULE !
In the final nine league matches of the season, Martin Terrier and his team will play six side currently in the Ligue 1 Uber Eats top 10: Nice, Monaco (7th), Strasbourg (5th), Nantes (9th), Marseille (2nd) and finally Lille (6th).
Lens, HEADING NORTH
On Sunday, 10 April, at 17:05, Le Gym will play away to RC Lens (8th). Les Sang et Or have 44 points (level with Monaco) in their second season back in French football's elite. As a reminder, the first match this season ended in a victory for Christophe Galtier's troops (2-1, goals by Mario Lemina and Justin Kluivert).
A tough run-in for Lens too
Like Rennes, Lens will have a particularly tough run in to the end of the 2021-22 season. In addition to Nice, they will face five top 10 teams: Strasbourg (5th), Lille (6th), Paris (1st), Nantes (9th) and Monaco (7th).
AGAINST LORIENT ET THE ALLIANZ
After Stade Rennais FC, OGC Nice will welcome another Breton team, FC Lorient (16th), on Sunday, 17 April, at 13:00. Christophe Pélissier's men have the least prolific attack in the league, with a total of just 24 goals scored. Les Merlus won the first leg by the narrowest (1-0).
Côte d'Azur derby in Monaco
The Aiglons will travel to neighbouring Monaco (7th) on Wednesday, 20 April, at 19:00. Note that six points separate the two Côte d'Azur sides. Although their first clash this season did not produce a winner (2-2), Nice will have their hearts set on bringing all three points back from the Stade Louis-II. To do so, the Nice defence will have to be wary of Ligue 1 Uber Eats's 17-goal top scorer Wissam Ben Yedder.
Monaco to make life tough for relegation contenders
Monaco will meet more teams from the second half of the general ranking: Metz (19th), Troyes (15th), Saint-Etienne (18th), Angers (14th) and Brest (13th).
Troyes, also winner in the first leg
Le Gym will host ESTAC (15th) on Sunday, 24 April, at 15:00. Troyes, back among the elite after a three-year absence, won the first match with Nice this season (1-0) thanks to a goal from Mama Baldé. Bruno Irles' troops currently have 29 points and sit two points clear of 18th and the Play-offs.
Bordeaux propping up the table
Before the long-awaited Coupe de France final against FC Nantes (Saturday, 7 May, at 21:00), Nice will visit Girondins de Bordeaux (20th) on the weekend of 30 April and 1 May. The exact day and time of the game are still to be determined. Currently bottom of the table, Bordeaux have the division's leakiest defence, with 70 goals conceded. Among these 70 goals, four came courtesy of OGC Nice: Justin Kluivert (1), Amine Gouiri (2) and Khéphren Thuram (1).
WHAT ABOUT MARSEILLE, STRASBOURG & LILLE ?
Olympique de Marseille (2nd) are now three points ahead of OGC Nice (53 points against 50). RC Strasbourg Alsace (5th) and LOSC Lille (6th) are close behind Le Gym, with 48 and 46 points respectively.
OM's run-in of the 2021-22 season will be marked by trips to Paris (1st) and Rennes (3rd), as well as the visit of Strasbourg to close the season.
Racing will host Rennes and Paris in Ligue 1 Uber Eats Rounds 33 and 35 respectively.
And finally, LOSC will conclude the 2021-22 season with a trip to Nice and visits to Strasbourg, Monaco and Rennes at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy for four of the last five league games.