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Review

Lively AS Monaco draw 1-1 with OM in an exciting encounter

AS_Monaco
┬ę AS Monaco

With AS Monaco sitting fourth and Olympique de Marseille occupying third in the Ligue 1 standings heading into their colossal clash, it was always going to be a tense, fiercely competitive match at the Velodrome.

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And so it proved, with both teams engaging in a fascinating battle, which eventually ended in a 1-1 draw.

The Match

Getting off to a fine start, Les Monegasques jumped out of the blocks briskly to immediate place OM under pressure. So lively going forward and looking dangerous every time they attacked, Wissam Ben Yedder, Eliesse Ben Seghir, Aleksandr Golovin and Krepin Diatta produced so much offensive impetus.

While Ben Yedder most notably missed a trio of chances early, the away team eventually capitalised on their ascendancy when they took the lead through a somewhat fortunate own goal from Jordan Veretout following a crisp set-piece routine.

Despite going ahead, the chances continued to flow for ASM, with Diatta and Ben Yedder enjoying many opportunities while Guillermo Maripan came close with a towering header.

Entering the interval with a deserved 1-0 lead, the challenge was now replicating their strong first half showing in the second stanza.

Unfortunately, the second period got off to a shocking start for Monaco, as Marseille immediately equalised when Alexis Sanchez scored from close range after Alexander Nubel spilled Nuno Tavares’ shot.

Marseille then came on strong, eager to carry their momentum, with Tavares coming close on many occasions and Leonardo Balerdi hitting the bar.

In the closing 10 minutes the chances reigned down, as Vanderson (twice) and Dmitri Payet weren’t far off finding the back of the net. Ultimately, however, the two teams had to settle for a point each in a match that was full of excitement.

Clement’s Debrief

“We faced a good team and had a great first half, both with and without the ball. The pressing we carried out was with intensity, as had been worked on in training. We were good collectively and in the organisation, but lacked success since we could have led 0-2, 0-3 or even 0-4 after the first 45 minutes,” the Belgian explained.

“At the start of the second half, we knew that Marseille would push thanks to the support of the Velodrome. It is in this type of situation that we still need to gain experience. But the team continues to grow and it is for example the first time that Eliesse Ben Seghir has played in a stadium like this, while opposite, Marseille can count on more experienced players. I am proud and happy with the personality of my players.”

“I’m obviously disappointed when I see the two games against Marseille because we could have taken six points, but that’s not the case unfortunately. We must not live in the past, but rather look forward, and this starts from Wednesday against Auxerre. We have to be focused on this game now and on ourselves only, without looking at what our direct competitors are doing.”

Key Stats

By the numbers, Monaco’s solid night at the office was illustrated by the fact they bettered their foes in terms of big chances created (3 to 1), open play XG (1.53 to 1.31) and tackles won (16 to 13).

Auxerre on the horizon

Up next for Monaco is a must-win home clash vs. Auxerre, where they’ll be keen to return to winning ways and reproduce their performance over AJA last month, where Ben Seghir memorably starred on their way to a pulsating 3-2 road victory.