The first home match of the second half of the league season has come already AS Monaco, and it’s an important one. After having recorded a third straight win against Montpellier (3-2), the Rouge et Blanc now welcome Olympique de Marseille to the Stade Louis-II this Saturday (9 PM, behind closed doors), as part of the 21st Matchday in Ligue 1.
A direct competitor for Europe
OM is a direct competitor for the top places, as Niko Kovac said Thursday, in his pre-match press conference. André Villas-Boas’ side They are thus only four points behind the Principality club, despite defeat on Wednesday against Lens (1-0), in a postponed match from the 9th round. The Marseillais currently sit sixth in the table.
In poor form over the last three games
Olympique de Marseille therefore remain a serious competitor for the European places, thanks to their good start to the season. However, Dimitri Payet’s teammates have been in poor form lately. With the setback against Lens, they recorded their second defeat in a row at the Stade Vélodrome. Before this was a loss to then-bottom Nîmes, who won in Marseille last weekend (2-1). The run also extends further than this, as Steve Mandanda and his side have only one victory in their last seven Ligue 1 games.
Overconfidence is dangerous
But OM have also won more points on their travels this season than at home, with 17 of their points coming on the road against 15 at the Stade Vélodrome. In addition, André Villas Boas has received an attacking reinforcement in the form of a new striker this week, with the arrival of Poland international Arkadiusz Milik from Napoli.
The forward, who has been named to the visitors’ squad for this match, can count on the support of Florian Thauvin in attack, as the winger is currently the top scorer in his team with six goals. And he will logically be the number 1 danger for the Monegasque defense led by Guillermo Maripán, who spoke this week to Téléfoot. Watch out for a wake-up call from Les Olympiens.
Press conference extracts:
Read Niko Kovac‘s pre-match press conference.
Read Wissam Ben Yedder‘s pre-match press conference.
AS Monaco – Olympique de Marseille by the numbers…
- 98: Number of matches in Ligue 1 against Marseille, with 34 wins for AS Monaco, 24 draws and 40 losses (135 goals scored, 136 conceded).
- 49 : Total number of matches played at the Stade Louis-II, with a record of 23 wins, 8 draws and 18 losses (70 goals scored, 53 conceded).
- 21: AS Monaco are fourth in the home standings with 21 points obtained from 10 matches.
- 6-1: On August 27, 2017, the Rouge et Blanc recorded their biggest win in their history against OM. That day, Kamil Glik, Fabinho, Djibril Sidibé, Adama Diakabhy and Falcao (double) were the scorers.
- 7: OM is a team that has been a favorite opponent for Wissam Ben Yedder. Indeed, the Monegasque striker has scored seven times against the Marseille club in his career in Ligue 1. Only rival Nice have conceded more goals against the number 9 than Marseille team, with nine goals. He is the scorer of 3 of AS Monaco’s last 4 goals against Marseille in the top flight.
- 3: The Principality club is on a run of three Ligue 1 matches with three or more goals scored and could make it four for only the second time in the 21st century, the first having come in February 2018.