Monaco-OM: A Large Gap

17 apr 2016
Frédéric Rostain
Photos © 
Yannick Parienti / 2016
Sunday at 9 pm, at the end of the 34th day of Ligue 1, OM will be playing Monaco. The Olympiens have the desire to stay in place as much as possible since ASM is trying to regain second place.

The word “maintenance” hasn’t been on the lips of Marseillaise until now. But with the pace of the Olympiens in the past three years, who only took one point out of nine, OM is now fighting not to keep advancing, but to at least keep its place in the elite. “Maintenance is a reality. We can’t aspire to the championship anymore”, emphasizes Bouna Sarr, “We have the team to stay in Ligue 1 and OM’s place is in L1.
If the context for the reception of Bordeaux (0-0) last Sunday was complicated, it was especially so after the announcement of the principal shareholder, Margarita Louis-Dreyfus, that the club is for sale. But that doesn’t seem to bother the team, which has been working all week to prepare for the upcoming deadlines.
OM’s lack of results made it lose the championship. Fourteenth in the rankings, Michel’s men haven’t won a game since February 2 in Montpellier (0-1). Their performance in away games, where they have shown strength since the beginning of the season, is no longer there. But OM remains the fourth-best team in away games. That’s why the Olympiens need to give a great performance at Monaco.

The team coached by Leonardo Jardim isn’t in the best shape of the season either. The Monegasques occupied second place between the 21st and the 32nd days. But, after their success at Parc des Princes (0-2), they underwent two losses against Bordeaux at home (1-2) and at Lille (4-1). The underachievement in the North woke up the spirits of the players from Rocher. In the end they didn’t actually get the second place that seemed like a lock. The tie game between their two main competitors (Lyon and Nice) for second place allowed them to be able to hope to take back their advantage if they could win against OM.

The Olympiens are showing up at the Louis-II Stadium with significant absences. Romain Alessandrini, sidelined in Bastia, will be sitting out his second suspended game. In the midfield, Michel will be without Lassana Diarra, who has a knee injury, and Mauricio Isla, injured in the adductors. Lucas Silva, first-string player at Bordeaux, Abou Diaby, first-string player at Bastia, and Alaixys Romao can make up for these absences.

The game would have been crazy, with a lot of goals and rebounds. Michel is waiting for a game that is just as open but hopes, like all of the Olympiens’ fans, for a different end.


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