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Team 28 May 2021, 21:45

20 stats that defined AS Monaco's incredible season

20 stats that defined AS Monaco's incredible season
Finalist in the Coupe de France and 3rd in Ligue 1 at the end of the season, the Principality club had an impressive season in every way. Here's a look back at the statistics that defined the exceptional performances of Niko Kovac's players.

Three years. It has been three years since AS Monaco finished on the podium, and punched their ticket to the Champions League – the Club will play next season in the third round of the competition. At the end of an exceptional season, Niko Kovac’s first on the bench for the Rouge et Blanc, marked by their sparkling form in 2021, the club from the Rock have indeed achieved their main objective: to return to Europe.

Only 3 losses in 28 games

Carried by an in-form attack since the start of the season (76 goals scored, exactly 2 goals per match), and buoyed by a defense that has become impermeable in 2021 (only 17 goals conceded  in 21 matches), Benjamin Lecomte’s teammates have managed several incredible performances losing only 3 times in their last 28 matches in all competitions, including not conceding a goal for nine straight matches in the spring.

Europe’s second-best side in 2021

But above amazing the whole of France with their style, AS Monaco have been the best-performing club in a European Big 5 league in 2021, behind only Manchester City. Here are 20 reasons to prove that the Red and Whites have accomplished great things this season, despite all odds; stats speak louder than words.

A 28th finish on the podium Ligue 1

AS Monaco have finished on the Ligue 1 podium for the 28th time in their history, more than any other team. The Rouge et Blanc have also finished in the top three in the league in 6 of the club’s last 8 top-flight seasons.

Best third place finish in history

The Principality club finished the 2020-2021 season on  78 points, equaling the best total for a team placed third at the end of a season in the top flight (in the era of three points for a victory), previously achieved by Saint-Etienne in 1978-1979, Nice in 2016-2017 and Lyon in 2017-2018.

Seven straight wins

AS Monaco this season became the first team to win their first 7 Ligue 1 games of a calendar year since Reims in 1949 (10).

15 penalties won

Niko Kovac’s men have won 15 penalties in Ligue 1 this season (12 converted), the highest total in a season since Opta have been analyzing the French league (2006-2007).

Two players with at least fifteen goals

With Wissam Ben Yedder on 20 and Kevin Volland on 16, the club from the Rock is one of five teams playing in the five major European leagues to have two players with at least 15 goals, with Montpellier, Tottenham, Atalanta Bergamo and Inter Milan. The two Monegasque goalscorers are the first strikers for the Principality’s club to both score at least 16 league goals in a season since 1999-2000, when David Trezeguet (22) and Marco Simone (21) both passed this milestone.

Ligue 1’s second-most decisive duo

With 36 goals and 14 assists between them, Wissam Ben Yedder and Kevin Volland have been involved in 50 of the 76 goals scored by AS Monaco this season (66%). This makes them the second-moist prolific duo in Ligue 1, behind the pair of Depay – Toko Ekambi (52). The French international (13 goals and 3 assists), who scored his 100th goal in Ligue 1 against Lyon, and the German striker (9 goals and 3 assists) are also among the most prolific players in the league in 2021.

Depay – Toko Ekambi (Lyon, 52)
Ben Yedder – Volland (Monaco, 50)
Delort – Laborde (Montpellier, 48)
Mbappé – Kean (PSG, 47)
Yilmaz – Bamba (Lille, 43)

5 goals off the bench

Only four players have scored more goals after coming on in a Ligue 1 season than Wissam Ben Yedder in 2020-2021 (5): Kaba Diawara in 1996-1997, Steve Marlet in 2000-2001, Michy Batshuayi in 2014-2015 and Kamil Grosicki in 2015-2016 (6).

29 goals from substitutes

AS Monaco were able to count on an efficient and decisive bench, the best in the top flight, to make the difference in the second half. Since the match against Lorient on January 6, Monegasque substitutes have been involved in 21 of the 46 goals scored by the team in Ligue 1 this year (14 goals and 7 assists), or 46% of the team’s goals. Over the season, they have recorded 18 goals and 11 assists, or 38% of the team’s total since last August (29 goals out of 76).

31 goals from set pieces

This has long been a strength for Niko Kovac’s men. AS Monaco have scored 31 set-piece goals in Ligue 1 this season (11 from a corner, 3 from a direct free kick, 5 from an indirect free kick and 12 from a penalty kick). That’s at least 6 more goals than any other team in the top flight, thanks to Robert Kovac’s inventiveness.

A goal after 10 seconds

The Russian international, Aleksandr Golovin, scored on January 6 against Lorient just 10 seconds after coming on, the fastest goal for a substitute in Ligue 1 since October 20, 2007 (Ireneusz Jelen for Auxerre against… Lorient).

Involved in 14 goals in 20 matches

The Tsar has been involved in 14 goals in 21 games for Monaco in Ligue 1 this season (5 goals, 9 assists). Only Andrey Arshavin (17 with Arsenal in 2010/11) has been more often decisive in the same season in one of the five major European leagues over the last 15 seasons among Russian players.

6 wins by at least three goals

Proof of the incredible attacking power of the Rouge et Blanc this season, coupled with a defensive solidity which developed over the course of the season, the teammates of Benjamin Lecomte, author of thirteen clean sheets in 28 league games, won six matches by at least three goals in 2021 (Lorient, Angers, Saint-Etienne, Metz, Dijon, Bordeaux).

7 goals

Benjamin Lecomte played his 250th match in Ligue 1 against Lens (119 with Lorient, 75 with Montpellier, 56 with Monaco). He has been involved in 7 plays leading to a goal in 2020-2021. This is more than any other goalkeeper in the French league, all while keeping 13 clean sheets in 28 matches.

7 different scorers

But danger has come from everywhere this season. The league’s third-placed side has seven players involved in at least five goals this season: Wissam Ben Yedder (20 goals and 7 assists), Kevin Volland (16 goals and 7 assists), Aleksandr Golovin (5 goals and 9 assists), Sofiane Diop (7 goals, 1 assist), Stevan Jovetić (6 goals), Guillermo Maripán (5 goals, 1 assist) and Gelson Martins (3 goals, 2 assists).

15 clean sheets

AS Monaco are third in the league in terms of clean sheets (15); only Lille (21) and Paris Saint-Germain have more.

Hitting the woodwork 17 times

AS Monaco could have scored more than 76 goals this season; the Rouge et Blanc have hit the woodwork 17 times this season; only PSG (24) and Lyon (20) have done so more.

349 recoveries in the final third

This statistic is the symbol of the style of play advocated by Niko Kovac. A believer in gegenpressing, the famous style of high pressing following a loss of the ball, the Croatian manager saw his team accumulate 349 recoveries in the final third over the course of the season. This is obviously the best total in Ligue 1, and at least 12 more than any team. AS Monaco have also scored 12 times in these situations, the best performance across all 20 teams.

187 balls recovered

And in this stat there is an expert in the Principality. He is quite simply the best in Ligue 1. Just crowned the UNFP Young Player of the Year, and a member of the Team of the Season, Aurélien Tchouameni  earned his honors. With 187 balls recovered in 2021, he is the best player in Ligue 1 in this statistic.

An average age of 24.7

This is the average age of the Monegasque squad this season. AS Monaco is the third-youngest team in Ligue 1, behind Nice and Reims. No fewer than 15 players aged 22 and under have been  played for the Principality side this season. These same players scored 15 goals, with the top scorer being Sofiane Diop with seven goals. If we add their assists, the “under 22s” have been decisive 24 times in total in the league.

6 “Rookies”

The Academy has been in the spotlight this season as six youngsters from its ranks have played with the first team: Benoît Badiashile, Giulian Biancone, Eliot Matazo, Chrislain Matsima, Enzo Millot and Valentin Decarpentrie. The young Belgian midfielder (19) even taking the opportunity to score his first professional goal against Reims. Finally, according to the CIES Football Observatory, players trained at AS Monaco totaled 8.94% of the entire squad’s playing time.

Rise. Risk. Repeat.

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