Unfortunately Monaco can’t keep up the same rythm for long, and exactly when it seemed they improved defensively Monaco conceded three times when nobody expected it (lost 3-1 at Bordeaux last round).
Defender Carvalho is one of the most experienced players in Ligue1 but he is also very slow and can easily be outplayed by fast forwards. Being Portuguese coach Jardim has a predilection for Portuguese players and most probably we won’t see Carvalho on the bench too soon…
Even in the offensive phase coach Jardim seems to prefer his young compatriot Helder Costa over much more experienced El Shaarawy. Costa is a gifted player but at this point Monaco need stability and continuity and not experimenting with new players.
Hosts should welcome back forward Cavaleiro after injury but will miss fullback / midfielder Fabinho who is suspended.
It was very disappointing for Nantes to concede in the final moments and end up with no points after a really balanced encounter (lost 2-1 at Montpellier last round).
Last season Nantes were struggling to find offensive players and had one of the poorest attacks in the tournament, and now coach Der Zakarian has too many attacking players available and can’t decide on a permanent formula and stick with it.
In theory rotation should increase competitiveness and determination but sometimes in reality it just prevents players from achievement full potential. Thomasson is one of the best young players in France at the moment, but he is constantly moved from the flank to the center and the other way around and struggles to cope with all the changes. Bammou used to be a striker but now he’s got playmaker tasks and will surely need time to adapt.
Nantes will have to do without important defender Vizcarrondo and defensive midfielder Deaux (both of them suspended).
Monaco should be the ones imposing the rythm and it remains to be seen if Nantes’ always changing attacking department will be able to speculate on counters and take advantage of hosts’ slow defense.
UPDATE: Besides Deaux and Vizcarrondo Nantes will also miss defender Gomis, winger Audel and midfielder Adryan
Monaco: Monaco : Subasic, Nardi – Carvalho, Coentrao, E.Echiejile, Raggi, A.Toure, Wallace – G.Boschilia, H.Costa, R.Lopes, J.Moutinho, Pasalic, B.Silva, Toulalan – Carillo, El Shaarawy, Lacina Traoré
Nantes: Riou – Dubois, Cana, Djidji, Sabaly – B. Touré, Thomasson – Iloki, Bammou, Moimbé – Sigthorsson. Dupé (g), Lenjani, Kwateng, A. Touré, Bedoya, Sala, Alegue.