LOSC boss Christophe Galtier has confirmed in-form Brazilian forward Luiz Araujo will start at home to Nantes on Friday evening.
LILLE - NANTES (kick-off 21:00 CEST)
Araujo has scored in each of his last two games and with new signings Jonathan David and Burak Yilmaz yet to get off the mark in Ligue 1 Uber Eats his contributions have been vital, earning four of LOSC's eight points claimed so far. Araujo is finally making good on the promise that saw the northern French club sign him in 2017.
Galtier said: "Every time he has come on he has made himself available and performed. He seized a great opportunity against Marseille with a very good display. Through his performance and the fact that he scored he has left me to make a logical choice. He will start against Nantes. It's a squad with a lot of attacking players and there is healthy competition. It is up to me to make the most of the form of the players."
Galtier on Yilmaz: "It will be better still when he scores a goal"
The LOSC coach could now do with David and Yilmaz joining the party. He added: "We speak a lot with Yilmaz about what I want him to do. He is finding his feet and talks a lot with his team-mates. He has great experience and is very committed to his task. Match after match, he's getting better. The same goes for him as for any attacker; it will be better still when he scores a goal."
Galtier told the pre-match press conference that one of his many attackers might leave the club before the end of the transfer window and that everyone will get their chance once there are more fixtures to play with the Europa League coming up soon. The fomer Saint-Etienne coach said: "The whole squad is available to play against Nantes. Straight after the draw at Marseille there was a lot of frustration in the dressing room and we tried to get over that quickly. We will try to play the same way in our matches to come, starting with Friday evening's game, an important game."
Nantes bounced back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at home to leaders Saint-Etienne last week and Christian Gourcuff's side have lost only one of their four games this season. Les Canaris, however, have a poor record against LOSC, winning only one of the last 22 meetings of the clubs. Last season Nantes fell 2-1 at LOSC in what was Gourcuff's first match in charge.
Gourcuff: "We'll be up against a quality side"
Gourcuff is expecting a tough match and said: "We'll be up against a quality side. I watched their game against Marseille. They are a dynamic side and collectively they are very strong. They have a lot of quality and the players complement each other very well. They are very good out wide and they are also capable of quick attacks if you leave them space. They also like pressing and it will down to us to get out of that pressing and to be vigilant when we lose the ball."
The Nantes coach is counting on 21-year-old forward Randal Kolo Muani to soon score his first Ligue 1 goal: "Has Randal's emergence chanced things when it comes to signing a centre-forward? Of course. Signing a player for the sake of making a signing has no interest and I think it can be negative."
LOSC: (to follow)
Nantes: (to follow)