C Krasnodar vs.OGC Nice / Europa League – This group was immediately after the lottery evaluated as very interesting, but after the first round, we have two teams with three points and two teams with no points. In this case, Krasnodar is the team that has won points away against Salzburg, while Nice lost points after a home defeat by Schalke. On the other hand, Krasnodar is having problems in the championship, where they are only in the sixth place with seven points behind the leading team, while Nice is great and they are now the leaders in Ligue 1, which is a great achievement. However, Krasnodar is lately in a positive series which started after they changed their coach and they have five games without defeat. Nice has five wins, two draws and one defeat in the championship, and that is the already mentioned defeat by Schalke. So far, these rivals have not met in their mutual duels. Begins: 29.09.2016. – 19:00 CET
Krasnodar is not playing badly at the beginning of the season and they routinely mastered Partizan and Birkirkara in qualifiers for Europa League and started the Championship with two safe home wins and without any goals received against Tomsk and Terek. There is no way we could have assumed that they will after that experience a negative series of four games without a win, with two draws against objectively weaker Samara and Ufa, because they also lost against their Moscow rivals Spartak and Lokomotiv.
Because of this negative series, their coach Kononov decided to resign, although he was not under too much pressure and the team was taken over by his assistant coach Shalimov as a temporary solution, who recorded a debut victory in Salzburg, which was followed by a triumph in the Champions League with Rostov, and also a victory in the Cup, while they last weekend played a great draw with the reigning champion CSKA, with 1-1. They received a goal early in the match and quickly responded, while they were losing against Rostov until three minutes before the end, when striker Smolov scored a goal, who is in great shape and has already scored eight goals in as many rounds. Their biggest problem are the injuries of Mameav and Wanderson, while midfielder Kabore is out of action for this match due to suspension.
Probable lineups Krasnodar: Kritsyuk – Kaleshin, Naldo, Granqvist, Jedrzejczyk – Akhmedov, Gazinsky – Bystrov, Torbinski, Joaozinho – Smolov
Nice is a great positive surprise in the French championship, because they are the only undefeated team in the league after seven rounds, so it is logical that they are at the moment in the leading position with one point more than their first companion Monaco, and with four points more than the current champions PSG. In addition, Nice has the best defence in the league with just four goals received and their effect is five wins and two draws. So, it turns out also that the only bad thing that happened to them is a defeat in the first round of Europa League by Schalke, who were outplayed in that match, while they do not have any victories in Bundesliga.
That is why this match is very important and a new defeat could bring them in almost hopeless situation. After a defeat by Schalke, they played a draw near Montpellier, and then mastered Monaco in the derby match with 4-0, which was their best match of the season. Last weekend they celebrated against Nancy, although coach Favre was having big problems with injuries of his players. Balotteli was again absent, who scored two goals against Marseille and Monaco. Goalkeeper Benitez is also out of action, as well as center-back La Marchand and another striker Le Bihan. Midfielders Koziel and Seri took a break in the match against Nancy, but they are now expected in the team.
Probable lineups Nice: Cardinale – Baysse, Dante, Sarr – Pereira, Cyprien, Koziello, Seri, Dalbert – Plea, Eysseric
FC Krasnodar vs. OGC Nice PICK
Krasnodar is in a very good mood after a short period of crisis and a change of their coach, so they are favourites in this match, regardless of the fact that Nice is playing great in the French championship. They have not started that well in Europa League, and they are having problems with injuries, so they might focus more on the championship.