Monaco comes from a 1:1 draw against St Etienne in the previous round of French Ligue 1. They had the ball possession and more opportunities created, but the visiting side preceded with the score and were dangerous on counter attacks at many points during the game. Still, determined hosts managed to equalize and we could say that the teams shared points, but also impressions on the field.
Still, this was a setback for Monaco, even though the opponent was a respected and powerful side. Now, the team of coach Jardim has three points less than third placed Marseille and simply needs to get a victory here in order to stay competitive in the battle for Champions League ticket. After a setback against St Etienne, nothing less but a victory is expected here anyway. Central defender Ricardo Carvalho still remains sidelined with injury after being subbed in a international game between Portugal an Serbia. Midfielder Bagayoko (10/0) and Ivorian striker Lacina Traore are also injured, but the second one anyway didn’t play much for a team this season, while the only absentee is actually Portuguese defender.
Montpellier, on the other side, comes from a hard fought 3:1 victory over Bastia last weekend. The Corsicans were very well organized side for the most of the game, ending the first halftime with a 1:0 lead, but in the repetition the players of Montpellier pushed much more and showed their determination.
However, has to be said that they had a bit of help from luck, as the team were awarded with two penalties within four minutes in order to turn the situation into their favor. The goal in 90th minute finally sealed their victory, in a difficult but fair three pointer for them. In case the team wants a Europa League ticket for next season, they simply have to get a positive result here, as they can only catch six placed Bordeaux in case of a three points here. Visitors do have few players out, but neither of them being even close to standard starting eleven material this season.
Important game for both sides, but I believe Monaco has what it takes to defeat Montpellier tonight. They surely have more quality than their opponents and playing in front of their fans should give them extra advantage. Another setback at home is quite unimaginable for me.
Hämtat från: BetPicks