Soccer: Ligue 1 Season Preview 2022-23

Outright Odds Favor PSG

PSG Favorites to Win Ninth Title in 11 Seasons

The Ligue 1 season gets underway in a week and Paris Saint-Germain appears to be hungry for another title. Unsatisfied with last season’s performance in the Champions League, Christophe Galtier replaced Mauricio Pochettino as PSG coach. While PSG will undoubtedly be the subject of most of the Ligue 1 headlines this season, the league has some great teams. We’ll take a look at the outright odds in our 2022-23 Ligue 1 season preview.

Parisians Ready for Another Title Run

Even with chemistry issues, injuries, and COVID last season, PSG won the league by a comfortable 15 points. If a team with Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, and Lionel Messi doesn’t win the title, something is wrong. The hope is that Galtier, who won Ligue 1 with Lille in 2020-21, can get the best out of the trio and win the Ligue 1 and Champions League double.

The rabid PSG fanbase won’t be satisfied with anything less. The team was on the verge of potential collapse in the offseason with Mbappe and Neymar rumored to be headed out of the exit door. However, Mbappe signed a long-term extension and Neymar’s price tag may be too hefty for any team to pull the trigger.

Mbappe was PSG’s star in Ligue 1 last season, as the winger scored 28 goals and added 17 assists. He led the league in both categories and is one of the best players in the world. One also has to think that Messi will do better than six league goals this season. The former Barcelona legend played more of a creator role last season, registering 14 assists in Ligue 1.

The Parisians have also been active in the transfer market and brought in some young talent. Striker Hugo Ekitiké, on loan from Reims, gives them an aerial presence and he’s one for the future. PSG also made 20-year-old left-back Nuno Mendes’ loan permanent after impressing in the French capital last season. Further reinforcements came in the form of FC Porto’s Vitinha and RB Leipzig’s Nordi Mukiele.

Paris Saint-Germain’s fans protested last season even after they won the league, so imagine the backlash if they went trophyless this season. They sit at -1000 odds to win consecutive league titles and this team is built for it.

In the Running

Last season, Marseille was one of the surprise teams in the league. With a loan army, they managed to finish in second place and qualify for the Champions League. Some of those players are returning to Marseille. Goalie Pau Lopez, midfielder Matteo Guendouzi, winger Cengiz Under and striker Arkadiusz Milik have all completed permanent transfers to the club.

One notable omission is center-back and Ligue 1 Young Player of the Year William Saliba, who is returning to parent club Arsenal. Marseille brought in Chancel Mbemba on a free transfer to try to replace Saliba, but it won’t be easy. OM show a +1100 price to win Ligue 1 this season under new manager Igor Tudor. Just after the 2021-22 season, coach Jorge Sampaoli shockingly left, after bringing Marseille back to the UCL.

Lyon finished in a disappointing eighth place in Ligue 1 in 2021-22 but has had an interesting offseason so far. Third all-time leading scorer Alexandre Lacazette is back with the club after spending five seasons at Arsenal. OL also signed former Bayern Munich midfielder Corentin Tolisso on a free transfer. Their experience should certainly help a team that was frustratingly inconsistent last season.

The post-Erik Ten Hag Ajax exodus continued as left-back Nicolas Tagliafico also made the switch to Lyon. OL has a bunch of technically proficient and creative players and could mount a title challenge if Lucas Paqueta and Houssem Aouar stay. That’s a big if, though, and their Ligue 1 odds to win the title are priced at +1400.

Dark Horses

AS Monaco closed last season as the league’s hottest team after hiring former Club Brugge coach Philippe Clement. They won nine of their last ten matches to secure third place and a Champions League berth. They also scored over €80 million by selling Aurélien Tchouaméni to Real Madrid this offseason. With the windfall, they’ve made smart deals for winger Takumi Minamino and forward Breel Embolo.

Still, those deals only cost them around €30 million. So, they’ve got a lot of dry powder to work with before the transfer window closes in September. Clement appears to have transformed Monaco and the Belgian won three consecutive Pro League titles from 2019-2021. Our Ligue 1 season preview identifies AS Monaco as one of the more interesting picks, at +2000.

Not far behind Monaco’s odds, Rennes are priced at +2500 to win the title. They’ve had a couple of high-profile exits in the offseason, though. Defender Nayef Aguerd joined West Ham while promising 17-year-old forward Mathys Tel left for Bayern Munich.

Rennes was in a great position to qualify for the Champions League last season but squandered it in the last few weeks of the campaign. They have one of the league’s best offenses, with Martin Terrier, Gaetan Laborde, and Benjamin Bourigeaud.

Longshots

Nice is one of the younger teams in the league and figures to improve as the years go on. Lucien Favre, who managed Nice previously from 2016-2018 is back after Christophe Galtier’s departure. In his first season with the club, he led them to their first Champions League/European Cup berth for over fifty years.

So, our Ligue 1 season preview identifies Nice as one of the most intriguing teams to watch this season. Amine Gouiri is one of the most talented young players in the league and approached double-digit goals and assists last season. Nice is priced at +4000 odds to win the title, something they haven’t done for over 60 years.

The last team in Ligue 1 with shorter than +10000 odds is LOSC Lille. They shockingly won the Ligue 1 title over PSG in 2020-21 but suffered a terrible championship hangover. Lille finished in tenth place under Jocelyn Gourvennec, who only lasted one season as manager.

Former Roma boss Paulo Fonseca is Lille’s new manager and he’ll have to cope with losing Sven Botman to Newcastle. The center-back was integral to Lille’s title run in 2020-21 and many of the title-winning players left last season. Center midfielder Renato Sanches is also nearing a transfer away, so Lille’s +8000 odds are unsurprising.

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