The UEFA Cup or Europa League, whatever its name, what is commonly called “the C3” is a prestigious competition, and one in which AS Monaco has already shone in the past. Before starting a new campaign, in a group with Sturm Graz, Real Sociedad and PSV Eindhoven, the club have already played 54 matches in the competition, with a positive record of 27 wins, 12 draws and 15 defeats. .
— AS Monaco 🇲🇨 (@AS_Monaco) August 27, 2021
A debut in 1979
The first match in the history of the Club in this tournament took place on September 19, 1979, with a trip to Shakhtar Donetsk in the Round of 64 first leg. It was a match that ended in a defeat (2-1), but Gérard Banide’s men would make up the deficit in the return leg, with a 2-0 victory, before Lokomotiv Sofia ended their journey in the round of 32.
The round of 32, however, was a stage of the competition that Monaco would not be able to reach in its next two appearances, in 1981-1982 and 1984-1985, with eliminations in the previous round against Dundee United and CSKA Sofia.
An epic run in 1996-1997
It was finally in the 1990s that Monaco would have its greatest moment in the competition. After elimination in the round of 16 in 1990-1991 against Torpedo Moscow, then in the round of 64 in 1995-1996 against Leeds, the Red and White would reach the semifinals in 1996-1997.
Jean Tigana’s team, with an incredible array of attackers (Sonny Anderson, Thierry Henry, Ali Benarbia, John Collins, Victor Ikpeba, Enzo Scifo …), would eliminate Hutnik Krakow, Borussia Mönchengladbach, Hamburg and Newcastle, before coming up short against a formidable Inter Milan led by Ivan Zamorano, Javier Zanetti and the former Monegasque Youri Djorkaeff (3-1 defeat in Milan, 1-0 victory at Louis-II).
Already ten tournaments
This remains to date the best performance of the Monegasques in the competition, as they would then reach the round of 32 in 1998-1999 and 2005-2006 (eliminations against Marseille and FC Basel), the round of 16 in 1999-2000 (elimination against Mallorca), then would be knocked out in the group stage in 2015-2016.
So let’s hope that, in this, the team’s eleventh participation in the competition, the spirit of 1996-1997 will smile on the Stade Louis-II this Thursday for the start of a new European adventure.