MX23RW : Saturday, September 18 12:38:13| >> :120:69327:69327:
Apr 25, 2021 at 4.05pm UK at Stade Jean Bouin
AngersAngers
0-1
MonacoMonaco

Manceau (45+1'), Ould Khaled (74')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Ben Yedder (79')
Tchouameni (57'), Ben Yedder (74')

Preview: Angers vs. Monaco - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Angers and Monaco, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Angers and Monaco prepare to lock horns in Sunday's Ligue 1 battle at the Stade Raymond Kopa following contrasting fortunes in their midweek Coupe de France outings.

Les Scoistes were thrashed 5-0 by holders Paris Saint-Germain in the quarter-finals, while Monaco sealed progress into the last four courtesy of a 2-0 win over Lyon.


Match preview

Angers manager Stephane Moulin pictured in January 2021© Reuters

The Coupe de France represented Angers' only real opportunity to end the season on a high, but Stephane Moulin's side succumbed to a 5-0 defeat against a rampant PSG, as Mauro Icardi bagged a hat-trick while Neymar and an own goal from Vincent Manceau completed the rout.

Angers' cup defeat came after they had suffered back-to-back 3-0 defeats in the league to Rennes and Lyon, so while Moulin will accept that his side have virtually nothing to play for in the final few weeks, he will not want to see his side end the season with a whimper.

Les Scoistes find themselves in 12th spot - 10 points clear of the bottom three and 12 off the European places - with five games left to play, so a late charge for a top-half finish is all that Moulin can realistically demand from his misfiring players, who are winless in five in the league.

With a measly two wins to boast from their last 15 in the top flight, Angers' patchy early-season form has certainly saved them from being dragged into a fight for survival at this late stage, and they will be welcoming Monaco to the Stade Raymond Kopa aiming to end a five-game winless run at home in Ligue 1.

Moulin's side have also failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last nine games at home - although a growing injury list has not helped them in the slightest - but they would do well to take a leaf out of Monaco's book given their oppoents' astonishing defensive record.

Monaco manager Niko Kovac pictured in February 2021© Reuters

Monaco are still fighting for success on two fronts following a 2-0 Coupe de France quarter-final win over Ligue 1 title rivals Lyon, during which Wissam Ben Yedder opened the scoring from the spot before Kevin Volland put the tie to bed just after the hour mark.

Niko Kovac's relentless charges cruised to a 3-0 success over Bordeaux before advancing in the cup, and with six successive wins and eight successive clean sheets to boast in all competitions, Monaco are steam rolling their way up the table as their rivals slip up.

Les Monegasques have leapfrogged Lyon in recent weeks and now occupy third spot in the table - one point below PSG in second and two below leaders Lille - but first meets fourth on Sunday evening when Lyon and Lille do battle, so Kovac will not want to pass up this opportunity to steal a march on their adversaries.

Monaco still have to face Lyon on May 2 - a game which could still prove pivotal in this thrilling race for supremacy - but their immediate focus will simply be on a comfortable success against Angers, and they travel to the Stade Raymond Kopa having scored at least three goals in each of their last four Ligue 1 matches.

Kovac's side have also won eight of their last nine away from home in the league and eased to a 3-0 success over Angers on January 9, while Les Scoistes have failed to win any of their last four home encounters with Monaco.

Angers Ligue 1 form:
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • L

Angers form (all competitions):
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L

Monaco Ligue 1 form:
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Monaco form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W



Team News

AS Monaco's Guillermo Maripan celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on January 23, 2021© Reuters

Angers' injury woes worsened before the cup defeat to PSG as full-backs Abdoulaye Bamba and Souleyman Doumbia were ruled out, and it would be a surprise to see either defender make a swift return to action.

The two defenders join Sofiane Boufal on the sidelines, with the winger not expected to play again this season, and creative focal point Angelo Fulgini is also struggling with a thigh issue.

However, Lassana Coulibaly and Antonin Bobichon could provide some fresh legs in midfield after coming off the bench on Wednesday, while Paul Bernardoni will replace Ludovic Butelle in goal.

Monaco were hit with a small coronavirus outbreak in recent weeks, with Enzo Millot, Chrislain Matsima, Krepin Diatta and Eliot Matazo thought to be infected, but none of the quartet is a regular first-team starter anyway.

Sofiane Diop lasted just 15 minutes against Lyon before coming off with an ankle issue, so Aleksandr Golovin will take his place, and Diop is joined in the infirmary by Cesc Fabregas, who is nursing a muscular problem.

Despite keeping a clean sheet in the cup, Radoslaw Majecki will surely make way for returning number one Benjamin Lecomte, while Guillermo Maripan and Djibril Sidibe are set to return to the back four.

Angers possible starting lineup:
Bernardoni; Manceau, Traore, Thomas, Capelle; Thioub, Mangani, Coulibaly, Bobichon, Pereira Lage; Bahoken

Monaco possible starting lineup:
Lecome; Sidibe, Disasi, Maripan, Henrique; Martins, Fofana, Tchouameni, Golovin; Ben Yedder, Volland


SM words green background

We say: Angers 0-2 Monaco

Angers are shipping goals at an alarming rate for Moulin, who has been hit with even more absentees in the rearguard before Monaco's ruthless attack pay a visit.

In contrast, Les Monegasques' form since the turn of the year has the principality side believing that a historic Ligue 1 triumph is on the cards, and while there may be some tired legs after a taxing Coupe de France fixture, we cannot see Kovac's side travelling home without all three points in the bag.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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Monaco
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Paris Saint-GermainPSG55001651115
2Angers532092711
3Marseille4310105510
4Nice4310100109
5Lens523010739
6Clermont52219908
7Lyon52218808
8Lorient52217708
9Montpellier HSCMontpellier521211927
10StrasbourgStrasbourg62131011-17
11Reims51316606
12Rennes512236-35
13Lille5122711-45
14Troyes511357-24
15NantesNantes511335-24
16MonacoMonaco511337-44
17Brest5032610-43
18Saint-EtienneSt Etienne503259-43
19Metz6033613-73
20Bordeaux5023512-72

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