Champions League Preview: Montpellier - Olympiakos
Nether side have started their European campaigns on top form this season, but will be hoping to take a giant step towards qualification with victory on Wednesday
By Livio Caferoglu
Jeunechamp, Congre, Hilton, Bedimo
Camara, Belhanda, Cabella
Torosidis, Manolas, Contreras, Holebas
Abdoun, Fuster, Mitroglou
Montpellier was dealt a huge blow with the news that Karim Ait-Fana - the opening goalscorer in the 2-2 draw with Schalke a fortnight ago - will be out for six months after the winger injured his right knee in training on October 11. Additionally, defender Garry Bocaly must serve a one-game ban following his red card against the Germans, along with coach Rene Girard.
However, experienced midfielder Romain Pitau is back after seeing out his suspension from the 2010-11 Europa League third qualifying round against Hungarian side Gyori ETO. Elsewhere, expect Emanuel Herrera and Remy Cabella to come into the fold. The pair were late substitutions in Saturday's 2-1 defeat to Rennes.
Meanwhile for Olympiakos, attacking midfielder Ariel Ibagaza is ruled out due to a groin injury, while Tassos Papazoglou's dislocated left shoulder means he will also miss the clash with the French champions. Yet two changes from the club's Super League success against Xanthi at the weekend should see Vasilis Torosidis and Kostas Mitroglou return to the side.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- This is the first time Montpellier will be facing Greek opposition.
- La Paillade have accumulated seven yellow cards so far, the joint highest total in the groups.
- In contrast to its opponents' seven-game winning run, MHSC has won just two of its nine Ligue 1 matches this season.
- Meanwhile Olympiakos has lost eight out of 12 games in France, recording just three victories.
- The Greeks have scored 98 goals in the Champions League group stage to the final.
- Djamel Abdoun, Paulo Machado, Francois Modesto and Rafik Djebbour all have experience of playing in France.
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Top 3 Predictions
Montpellier Herault SC 2-1 Olympiakos Piraeus
- 15.39 %
Montpellier Herault SC 1-1 Olympiakos Piraeus
- 13.74 %
Montpellier Herault SC 1-0 Olympiakos Piraeus
- 11.54 %
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||2012-11-06||Olympiakos Piraeus 3 - Montpellier Herault SC 1|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||2012-10-24||Montpellier Herault SC 1 - Olympiakos Piraeus 2|
|Montpellier Herault SC|
|2013-12-13||Montpellier Herault SC 0 - AS Saint-Etienne 1||Lig1|
|2013-12-08||Toulouse FC 1 - Montpellier Herault SC 1||Lig1|
|2013-12-04||Montpellier Herault SC 0 - FC Lorient 2||Lig1|
|2013-11-29||Olympique de Marseille 2 - Montpellier Herault SC 0||Lig1|
|2013-11-23||Montpellier Herault SC 1 - EA Guingamp 1||Lig1|
|5||Vitorino Hilton da Silva||Defender|
|10||Rafik Zoheir Djebbour||Striker|