AS Monaco did not lack effort in a comprehensive win against Saint-Etienne at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard (4-0). The Rouge et Blanc of Niko Kovac brought back three points from their trip to the Loir valley, having been put on the right track by Stevan Jovetić at the start of the match.
Fourteen points ahead of Marseille
This result allows the Principality club to consolidate its position in fourth place in the top flight, moving provisionally fourteen points ahead of Marseille. The icing on the cake, of course, was that the Monegasque goalkeeper Benjamin Lecomte had yet another clean sheet, the fifth in the last six matches for the Monegasques. The manager as well as the evening’s first scorer were necessarily delighted at the post-match press conference.
Good evening Niko. It was a fine match for the team tonight.
It was a very good performance indeed. The result speaks for itself. We are very happy with this result. We had an excellent second half. I’m happy, we have more than deserved this victory. We were focused throughout the game, and played with high pressure. We have two weeks off now.
Stevan Jovetić started in place of Wissam Ben Yedder this evening, why?
Jove’ had a very good game despite missing a penalty. He scored three minutes later. He deserves to play, he’s come on many times and he’s shown great things every time. As a coach, I had to give him this opportunity. This is not a sanction against Wissam. There is a lot of competition in the team, I’m very happy to have them both in my squad, it’s great.
You’ve combined another clean sheet with a fine attacking display; you’ve found a certain balance.
We have been conceding few chances in general, we would have conceded a goal on one or two shots before. We’ve been giving up fewer chances lately. I’m happy for the team. The forwards were delighted to score four goals tonight, but so were the defenders because of the clean sheet; I am very happy for them.
You are one point off the podium, what is the club’s goal?
We have to take it step by step. The first step is to secure fourth place. Lyon and Paris are certainly only a point ahead but we are not thinking about that at the moment. Fourth place is not mathematically assured. We will wait for the next match, I do not want to look beyond that. We are aware of the strengths of the top three teams.
What did you think of Aurélien Tchouameni’s performance?
He is emblematic of our team. We have improved since the start of the season, just like him. He is the player who has improved the most since last summer. He works hard to get better, and he deserves his success. If he continues down this path, he can have a great career.
Good evening Stevan. What did you think of your match?
I think we had a great match, we scored four goals. It was not an easy match to play. I missed a penalty in the first half unfortunately, but the team responded. I corrected that by scoring soon after, we are very happy with this result.
Can AS Monaco aim higher?
No, we have to focus on the next fixtures, taking it game by game. The objective for tonight was to win, and now international matches are coming. We are only thinking of the next match in two weeks, against Metz.