Ligue 1 Uber Eats 04 February 2024, 16:32

AS Monaco held to a draw by Le Havre

AS Monaco held to a draw by Le Havre
Despite Wissam Ben Yedder's opener and a number of chances in the Norman box, the Red and Whites were forced to share the spoils with a resilient Le Havre side (1-1).

A dominant but unrewarded Red and White side were held to a 1-1 draw by Le Havre at the Stade Louis-II on Sunday, in a match marked by a heartfelt tribute to the legendary Jean Petit in the presence of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and AS Monaco President Dmitry Rybolovlev.

The Context 📅

Beaten on their home return by Stade de Reims (1-3) then held  by Olympique de Marseille at the Vélodrome (2-2), The Red and Whites were aiming for their first Ligue 1 win in 2024 at the Stade Louis-II. A complex task, if we recall the reverse fixture (0-0), where Philipp Köhn rescued the draw saving a penalty at the last second. It would be all the more so given that AS Monaco have not won in the Principality against HAC since… 4th May 2000!

As I said, Le Havre are a very good counter-attacking team, which means we can't make too many easy mistakes and lose the ball in certain areas. We have to be very wary of this and quickly regain possession when we lose it. We've been working on that in training this week, so I'm pretty confident.
Adi HütterSpeaking about Le Havre

The Eleven 👥

To rise to the challenge, Adi Hütter decided to field an ambitious 3-1-4-2 starting line-up. Aleksandr Golovin, who had been very combative in midfield when the team was reduced to 10 men against OM, lined up alongside Youssouf Fofana and Maghnes Akliouche. Wissam Ben Yedder was accompanied by Eliesse Ben Seghir, who extended his contract last week until 2027. There was notably a come-back for Ismail Jakobs, returning from AFCON duty.

The Scenario 🎞

Before kick-off, a heartfelt tribute was paid to club legend, Jean Petit, who passed away last Tuesday. There was a minute’s applause with Jeannot’s family, who were present at the side of the pitch, while the Monegasques wore shirts bearing his name. After this period of reflection, the Normans began the game by pushing forward, but Antoine Joujou was unable to find the net (3′ and 10′).

Chances for Monaco, but no success

The Red and Whites responded immediately, putting some pace into their passing, but Maghnes Akliouche’s effort was blocked (13′). The opening was close, but  Eliesse Ben Seghir was beaten by the Le Havre defence and Akliouche, again, was thwarted by Arthur Desmas (18′). Monegasque pressure was intense on HAC’s goal, but the Normans regrouped well.

Philipp Köhn even had to be alert to keep out Christopher Opéri’s direct corner (39′). Eliesse Ben Seghir’s last effort on target finally sealed the outcome of the first half (44′). After the restart, the Rouge et Blanc came out on top, but Thilo Kehrer’s effort from a corner was again saved by Desmas (51′). Then Antoine Joujou, Le Havre’s most prominent player, found the side-netting (54′).

Breakthrough… then misfortune

Fortunately, after a textbook three-man move set up by Golo’, Akliouche laid the ball off to Wissam Ben Yedder, who finished from close range (1-0, 63′). It was his 11th goal of the season, and the second assisted by the Monaco academy product. The joy was short-lived, however, as from a free-kick taken by Opéri, Youssouf Fofana inadvertently deflected the ball into his own net (1-1, 65′).

Takumi’s return to action

Adi Hütter’s men fought back and Takumi Minamino, back from the Asian Cup, even came on as a substitute. Wissam Ben Yedder even thought he had won a penalty for contact with Gauthier Lloris, but referee Brisard disagreed (75′). No matter, Monaco’s No.10 was back involved in the action and was denied again by Desmas, who headed off the line and into his own net (82′).

Continuing the Coupe de France adventure

The end of the match was completely in the Red and Whites’ favour, but unfortunately Kassoum Ouattara’s last-gasp header also found the Normandy keeper’s gloves. As the final whistle blew, AS Monaco draw at home to Le Havre, and will have to bounce back on Thursday in the Coupe de France against Rouen (20h45).

Key moments 🎥

3: Joujou’s shot from 20 metres misses the target
10: Joujou’s cross intercepted by Philipp Köhn
13: Akliouche’s shot is blocked by Ben Yedder’s throw-in
17: Free-kick caught in the air by Köhn
18: Ben Seghir’s shot blocked, then Desmas saves from Akliouche
39: Opéri’s direct corner saved by Köhn
44: Ben Seghir’s powerful shot goes airborne
51: Kehrer volleyed over from a corner, but Desmas saved
54: Joujou strikes into Köhn’s side-netting
63: Golovin sets up Akliouche, who assists Ben Yedder for the opening goal (1-0)
65: Opéri’s free-kick deflected by Fofana into his own net (1-1)
82: Ben Yedder header saved by Desmas
94: Ouattara heads in a cross from Fofana

The stat 📊

Wissam Ben Yedder has played his 500th match for his club in all competitions (174 with Toulouse, 138 with Sevilla and 187 with AS Monaco). It is with the Principality side that he is most prolific, having scored  his 113th goal in red and white (71 with Toulouse and 70 with Sevilla). The Monaco captain has also been involved in 5 of his team’s last 6 top flight goals.

📋 Match details:

Sunday 4th February – Stade Louis-II

Ligue 1 Uber Eats – Matchday 19: AS Monaco 1-1 Le Havre

Halftime : 0-0

Goals: Ben Yedder (63′) for AS Monaco ; Fofana (own goal, 65′) for Le Havre

Bookings: Magassa (33′), Ben Yedder (75′), Golovin (92′) for AS Monaco ; for Le Havre

AS Monaco : Köhn – Magassa, Kehrer, Salisu – Vanderson, Fofana, Golovin, Jakobs (Ouattara, 86′) – Akliouche (Minamino, 72′), Ben Seghir (Diatta, 57′) – Ben Yedder ©

Substitutes: Majecki, Ouattara, Platret, Valme, Coulibaly, Diatta, Diop, Minamino, Michal

Manager: Adi Hütter

Le Havre : Desmas – Sangante © (El Hajjam, 88′), Youté, Lloris, Opéri – Kouziaïev (Ngoura, 88′), Ndiaye (Nego, 70′), Kechta – Sabbi (Grandsir, 87′), Casimir, Joujou (Ayew, 61′)

Substitutes: Gorgelin, El Hajjam, Nego, Salmier, Confais, Ayew, Bentoumi, Grandsir, Ngoura

Manager: Luka Elsner