Lille will look to close in on the Ligue 1 title when they travel to face Lens on Friday at 8pm (UK time) in a thrilling Derby du Nord.
Les Dogues are a point clear of Paris Saint-Germain atop the Ligue 1 table with three games left to play, while rivals Lens are fighting to hold onto their Europa League spot.
How to live stream Lens vs Lille online:
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Where to watch Lens vs Lille on TV:
- UK: BT Sport 2
- US: beIN Sports
Scoreline prediction: Lens 1-2 Lille
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Lens vs Lille build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Away from the title race, Lens have been one of the success stories of the Ligue 1 season, currently sitting fifth in the table having been promoted from Ligue 2 last summer. Only the top four have won more Ligue 1 games than Franck Haise’s men this season and they are just three matches away from qualifying for Europe for the first time since 2007. However, they are only above sixth-placed Marseille on goals scored and lost last time out against PSG, ending their 13-game unbeaten run in the league.
It might not be the best time, then, for a Derby du Nord as rivals Lille are chasing the league title. Christophe Galtier’s men have been pretty phenomenal in the league all season, entering the top four in the fifth gameweek with 2-0 win of Nantes and not dropping out since. They have lost just three league games all season, beaten by Brest, Angers and Nimes, often getting the better of those around them – aiding the title push. Since that last defeat against Nimes, Lille have gone on a five-game unbeaten run including victories over PSG and Lyon, while Nice were the most recent team to fall. Just three more wins and Lille are there.
- Lens (vs PSG): Farinez; Medina, Fortes, Gradit; Clauss, Cahuzac, Fofana, Doucoure, Michelin; Ganago, Kalimuendo.
- Lille (vs Nice): Maignan; Celik, Fonte, Botman, Mandava; Araujo, Soumare, Andre*, Bamba; David, Yilmaz.
Lens have no fresh injury concerns but Massadio Haidara, Loic Bade and Issiaga Sylla will all be available following suspension. Lyon are without midfield maestro Benjamin Andre through suspension, while Timothy Weah is still injured.
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Player to watch: Burak Yilmaz (Lille)
He wasn’t the headline forward signing last summer but Burak Yilmaz has been crucial to Lille’s title push, and the Turkish veteran proved that once again last weekend.
When Yilmaz joined from Besiktas he was expected to be a supporting act for Jonathan David, who was tipped to be Victor Osimhen’s main replacement. But the pair have thrived best when working together, combining to score 24 goals. Yilmaz has contributed to slightly more of that tally, with 13 for the season including the opener against Nice from David’s set up.
The 35-year-old has now scored four goals in his past five league starts, an excellent return considering he suffered a calf injury that had kept him out for two months between January and March.
Ligue 1 2020/21 recent form:
- Lens: LWDWD
- Lille: WWDWW
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