Nantes Win Relegation Playoff to Maintain Place in Ligue 1 Football

After scraping past Toulouse on away goals in the relegation play-off on Sunday, Nantes will play in Ligue 1 next season, capping up a tumultuous season. Nantes have flirted with relegation for the best part of the season.

Antoine Kombouare‘s side lost 1-0 to Toulouse on the night, courtesy of Vakoun Bayo’s 62nd-minute goal, but they retained their top-flight status following a 2-1 win in the south west during the first leg of the play-off. Football fans enjoyed live soccer betting during the decider which could have seen Nantes fall to the second tier in the 2021/22 season.

It marks an end to a troubled season for Nantes, which saw them operate under three coaches, including a dismal and brief stint with vilified former France national team coach Raymond Domenech.

Fans welcomed Domenech’s appearance at his first training session in late December with mock music in one of the season’s most famous incidents, and things didn’t get any better before he was fired in mid-February after failing to win a single game.

Betting with Betway was great as Kombouare kept Nantes out of the automatic relegation positions with a four-game winning streak in their last five league games, and then overcame Toulouse to keep them in Ligue 2.

New French Champions

After a 2-1 victory against Angers on the last day of the season, Lille were declared Ligue 1 champions.

It is Lille’s first title in ten years, and just the second time in the last nine seasons that PSG have not clinched the Ligue 1 title. 

PSG triumphed 2-0 at Brest but hoped leaders Lille would slip at Angers. While it might have been a nervy day for Lille, it took only 11 minutes for Jonathan David to silence the hosts, and put Lille well on course for the title.

Imminent Changes in Ligue 1

Meanwhile, from the 2023/24 season onwards, France’s Ligue 1 will be reduced from 20 to 18 clubs.

The French professional league (LFP) announced on Thursday that the proposal received 97 percent of the vote at its general assembly.

The assembly agreed to restrict the number of clubs by relegating four teams from Ligue 1 at the conclusion of the 2022/23 season, while only two clubs from Ligue 2 will be promoted.

Ligue 1 used to include 18 clubs, but in the 2002/03 season, it was increased to 20. The lowest two teams are now relegated, while the 18th-placed team joins the relegation playoffs.

“It’s a very good decision which shows the unity of the players in French football,” said Vincent Labrune, the LFP boss.

“Above all, it makes it possible to create the conditions for an ambitious reform plan for the future.”

According to the LFP, Ligue 2 will have to consider lowering its number of clubs to 18.

The promotion and relegation system will be reverted at the end of the 2023/24 season, with two teams relegated from Ligue 1 and two promoted from Ligue 2, plus a playoff between the third from bottom in Ligue 1 and the third in Ligue 2.

Germany’s Bundesliga, like the other of Europe’s major leagues, features 18 top-flight clubs and 34 rounds of matches instead of the 38 in England, Spain, and Italy. All these top European leagues are available on Betway, and fans have the opportunity to bet across multiple markets.


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