Europa League is back again and Tottenham are on their way to sunny South France at Monaco’s principality to play an important game vs big spenders AS Monaco. It’s the first official game between the two sides, but their last friendly 5-2 finished in favor of the local team (2013).
Tottenham’s players should enter the game with confidence after their latest results in EPL( sixth on the League’s Table) and last Saturday’s home victory 4-1 vs Manchester City.
The same cannot be told about les Monegasques; Monaco are ninth on the Ligue 1 Table, miles away from Paris st Germain and their stats are quite appealing: 8 games, 12 goals scored, 13 conceded and an impressive number of Yellow cards: 17 plus a red one.
Since the arrival of their Russian billionaire Dmitri Rybolovlef and a first season spending galore, things are now quite different. Monaco is now more of a selling club, (FC Porto style), buying young promising players like Anthony Martial, Yannick Ferreira Carrasco, Geoffrey Kondongbia or Aymen Abdenour and selling them one or two years later, much, much more than their initial price. This year, is not an exception and the ninth place reflects the club’s reality. The new signings, mostly of them on loan, as Stephan El Shaarawy, from AC Milan, Helder Costa, Benfica and Real Madrid’s Fabio Coentrao need some more time to get used in Ligue 1 and the team’s routine.
At least the club’s faithful had some good news today; their Captain Jérémy Toulalan is back on the training ground and fit to play. The Frenchman’s international experience will be very much needed on the pitch of Louis II Stadium.
Head Coach Jardim will try to inspire his squad and try to convince his players not throw away an eventual lead as they’ve done already three times(ex. against EA Guingamp)
Is this team able to win vs the English side? The Monégasque squad are good : ( GK Subasic, DF Coentrao, Ricardo Carvalho, MF Joao Moutinho, Bernando Silva, FW Lacina Traoré…) but they’ll need to keep their concetration and certainly not play as they did in Belgium against Anderlecht (1-1).
Tottenham are coming to the Rocher, confident and hoping for a good result; Head Coach Mauricio Pochettino will expect a serious game from his squad, after the promising performances of Eric Dier, Heung-Min Son, Clinton NJie and oldtimers Christian Eriksen, Eric Lamela, Harry Kane, Jan Vertonghen and Hugo Lloris. Will they all play or rested to stay fresh for the very demanding EPL ? Eric Dier played in every competition, how long can he keep going like that ? GK Lloris is expected to play though; Nice(Nizza) his hometown is very close to Monaco and many Niçois will come to the game to watch and cheer their local hero .
The Lilywhites won their first game 3-1 vs Qarabag at home and another victory could help them to stay in control of their group. The game is set to begin at 7 o-clock, local time at Louis II Stadium.
As time goes by, there are several links with Monaco’s/ Tottenham players who played for both clubs; here they are !
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