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Ligue 1: AS Monaco prepares to end superb season in style

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@ASM

This Sunday, AS Monaco hosts FC Nantes at the Stade Louis-II for its last match of the season. Already vice-champions of France and qualified for the Champions League, the Rouge et Blanc will play without pressure, but still with the desire to finish in style.

Two days before the end of the season, the 2023-2024 squad exchanged its final passes and tactics at the La Turbie Performance Centre. The sun was shining, the atmosphere light and the players happy. What more could you ask for? Returning after a victory in Montpellier having achieved their goals for the season by finishing second in the championship and qualifying directly for the Champions League after six years without having participated, they’ll be eager to close the campaign on a positive note.

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While this match with 14th-placed Nantes, who have secured their Ligue 1 status for another season can’t change the league position of either, Monaco’s players intend to give everything until the end to win this last match and finally celebrate this great season alongside the supporters that are expected in large numbers at the Stade Louis-II.

A word from the coach

With a smile on his face, Adi Hutter sat down for the last pre-match press conference of the season. Although the coach is delighted to have achieved his major objective with this squad, he also intends to keep his team focused to win this last match.

Related Reading: Adi Hutter: Everything you need to know about the AS Monaco manager

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“We have had three periods during this season. We played fantastic football at the start, before having a more difficult period with injuries, the CAN and the Asian Cup. The Derby win in Nice was a key game and got us back on track. We then beat direct UCL competitors like Brest and Lille and achieved a total of ten away victories,” explained Hutter.

“I immediately felt a lot of joy after the match in Montpellier. There was a fantastic atmosphere, a lot of joy on the pitch and in the locker room. I think we really deserve to finish second. Everyone is very happy to have brought the club back to the Champions League after six years of absence. Now we have to focus on Nantes. We have to win this match first and then we can celebrate afterwards.”

Thilo Kehrer will be Red and White until 2028

Arriving during the season from West Ham United (Premier League), 27-year-old international defender Thilo Kehrer announced that he has signed up for the next four seasons with the Principality club. With 17 appearances in the red and white jersey, the German stopper is delighted to continue this adventure and, above all, to participate in the long-awaited Champions League.

“It was a matter of details, but now it’s official. The purchase option was effectively exercised and I am committed until 2028. The return to the Champions League is magnificent! When you are a young player, you obviously dream of playing in this competition. We are therefore all very satisfied to have achieved our major objective, even if we want to finish the season well against Nantes. But everyone is already looking forward to next season in the Champions League,” he insisted.

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“I think there is the experience of past mistakes, but above all I felt a strong motivation coming from within the team. It is a source of pride to bring AS Monaco back to this place. Some of the experienced players have told me about the disappointments they experienced in the play-offs in previous years, so to return to this prestigious competition is extraordinary. This is a great accomplishment!”

During the press conference, the Monegasque coach commented on this signing by congratulating his player: “Thilo deserves this extension. I’m happy for him, because he had a very good second half of the season. He progressed from match to match and behaved like a leader. He is a key player in our squad, speaks several languages ​​and is versatile. He is a professional and he communicates with everyone, whether experienced players or younger ones.”

This last meeting of the season will also be marked by several key points to remember

  • Several young players from the Academy will have the opportunity to get playing time, such as Eliesse Ben Seghir, Soungoutou Magassa and even Saimon Bouabre and Lucas Michal, who were on the bench against Montpellier last weekend.
  • Many activities and surprises are planned to celebrate this season, including the presence of a DJ inside the stadium. Flags will also be distributed to supporters.
  • On the Stade Louis-II square, the Kids Tour truck will welcome Maghnes Akliouche, author of eight goals and four assists, for a signing session from 7:30 p.m.
  • The Ultras supporters group is celebrating its 30th anniversary! To mark this occasion, all its branches and other AS Monaco supporter associations around the world will be present to celebrate.
  • It is a tradition that Les Monegasques Supporters Club (CSM) will award a trophy to the best player of the season, as well as to the best player of the second part of the season.
  • Finally, tickets are on sale from 8 euros, with reductions for under-16s, students, people with reduced mobility, Monegasques and members of a sports club in the Principality, while places are free for school children aged under 18 in Monaco or in neighbouring towns (Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, Beausoleil, Cap-d’Ail, La Turbie, Eze, Peille and Menton).

This article was translated from our French edition