Having suffered three consecutive losses against Lille, Marseille and Lens before their win over Dijon at the weekend, AS Monaco will be keen to carry their winning momentum into their midweek clash with Saint-Etienne.
Although Monaco didn’t hit peak form during the vital win over Dijon, they showed plenty of promise on both sides of the ball. Without the ball, they showed some impressive pressing from their 4-4-2 structure and counterpressing immediately after they lost possession, which helped them gain some impetus.
Meanwhile, on the ball, upside could be extracted from their smooth build up, second ball structure and neat interchanges between Wissam Ben Yedder and Sofiane Diop.
When speaking after the Dijon match, Kevin Volland’s summation was pretty spot on. “I don’t think we played our best game of the season against Dijon, whether with or without the ball, but I think the most important thing was the result. We respected what the coach wanted to see from us. And it’s a good victory for us.”
While they’re back at home, where they have a terrific record, Les Verts certainly won’t be an easy obstacle to overcome. Indeed, Claude Puel’s team have proven an extremely tough outfit to defeat, for they’ve only lost one in their last seven and are unbeaten in five. Even though they’ve drawn four of their last five, the point still stands that they’re a tough nut to crack.
In terms of team selection, Niko Kovac will be boosted by the return of Axel Disasi from suspension, but will unfortunately have to do without Youssouf Fofana due to suspension. Fofana will be expected to be replaced by youngster Florentino Luis, who’ll relish the opportunity to prove himself.
Having lost their last four matches against Saint-Etienne, Monaco will be eager to finally get a win over Les Verts, in what will be a hugely important clash for both teams.