The first half got off to a relatively low-key start. Despite seeing plenty of the ball, the Monegasques were unable to create anything in the final third, aside from a darting run into the box by Silva, whose cross was deflected behind for a corner by Marchal. But Metz gradually found their way into the game and began to ask questions of the visitors. First through Ndaw on 17 minutes (with a header off target), and then through Falcon on 23 (a shot on the turn pushed away well by Subasic). The first clear-cut opening of the night fell to AS Monaco in the 26th minutes, Fabinho sending a ball deep into the box looking for Dirar, who turned the ball on towards Martial. The young forward found himself one-on-one with Mfa, and his dinked effort was close to giving his side the lead. Towards the end of the first half, there were two more opportunities for Metz to break the deadlock. On 44 minutes, Falcon fired in a shot from a central position, but Suba was alert and got down to smother the ball at the second attempt. Malouda then had a go on the stroke of half time, yet once again the Croatian goalkeeper was equal to the task and pushed the ball behind for a corner.
Dominance no guarantee of success
The opening period of the second half was rather quieter, the first chance coming in the 49th minute as Ndaw sent a header goalwards that was dealt with well by Subasic. On 54 minutes, Malouda unleashed a superb effort from the edge of the area that skimmed the frame of the Monaco goal. The visitors responded immediately, through Martial who got in on goal but sent his left-foot shot wide of the target… by the 68th minute, the stats were against the visitors, with FC Metz having registered fifteen attempts on goal compared with AS Monaco's four.
The final quarter-hour saw the match swing firmly in AS Monaco's favour. On 74 minutes, Ferreira Carrasco went on a marvellous diagonal run that saw him dribble his way past the entire Metz defence, but his shot lacked power and was dealt with comfortably by Mfa. Four minutes later, the Belgian enjoyed better success to cap a fine team move. Germain found Traoré with a long ball forward, and the Ivorian picked out Ferreira Carrasco on the left. The winger's control was perfect as he curled the ball past Mfa and into the far corner. What a goal! The Monegasques had made the breakthrough, and would go on to protect their advantage until the final whistle, securing their fourth successive win in Ligue 1 and a fourth straight clean sheet into the bargain. The three points take Leonardo Jardim's men up to fifth in the table, ensuring they go into the festive period on a high ahead of a busy January!