Busy schedule for Monaco who are involved both in Champions League and in the fight for European places in Ligue1.
They have asked for postponement of Ligue1 games but were denied by French football officials and they will be forced to play 3 games (Champions League included) in one week time.
Even in this moment tiredness is visible especially in the defensive phase where players are often caught off guard and easily outplayed by long passes or fast paced actions.
If coach Jardim won’t do something to assure freshness Monaco may lose on both fronts and may end up eliminated from Champions League and without a place in Europe next season.
Montpellier started last round against Bastia very hesitant and found themselves 1-0 down at half time. Coach Courbis may have given an inspirational talk at half time as players entered the field more determined and managed to apply constant pressure. Opponents got overwhelmed and gave away 2 penalties that changed the fate of the game (Montpellier won 3-1).
Play-maker Martin returned after a long injury, played the entire second half and his efforts played a big role in Montpellier’s recovery.
Especially in the second half the entire midfield line looked impressive as they managed to create dangerous actions through various means (speed, long balls, through balls)
In comparison to last round there is only one change in Monaco’s squad (forward Traore is in and Toure is out) and most likely coach Jardim won’t make any changes and will use the best lineup possible. The only problem is the best lineup possible won’t be able to achieve full potential due to the tiredness accumulated.
Form is good, confidence is running high and Montpellier also have the necessary resources to take advantage of Monaco’s busy schedule. Montpellier +0.75 at 1.99
Monaco: Stekelenburg, Subasic – Abdennour, Echiejile, Fabinho, Kurzawa, Raggi, Wallace – Carrasco, Dirar, Kondogbia, Moutinho, Ber.Silva, Toulalan, Al.Traoré – Berbatov, Germain, Martial, Matheus
Montpellier: Jourdren, Ligali – Congré, Hilton, Tiéné, El Kaoutari, Deplagne – B.Dabo, Lasne, Sanson, J.Marveaux, Saihi, J.Martin – Mounier, Bérigaud, Barrios, S.Camara, Bakar