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Osimhen better but not to be risked against Monaco

Publish on 20/12/2019 at 14:30

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Victor Osimhen will not feature when LOSC take on AS Monaco for the second time in five days, although no cardiac anomalies have been detected following the Nigeria striker's early substitution last Tuesday.

AS Monaco - LOSC

Osimhen - who has top scored for Lille this season with nine Ligue 1 Conforama goals - opened the scoring inside the first 20 minutes at the Stade Louis II when these two sides met in the Coupe de la Ligue last 16 on Tuesday.

The 20-year-old complained of dizziness and pain during his celebration, and was taken to the nearby cardio-thoracic centre in Monaco. No anomalies were found, but he was monitored for consecutive nights and will return to Lille.

'Everything's fine'

"We talked to him and everything's fine, everything's back to normal," LOSC coach Christophe Galtier explained, before turning to a game which, if LOSC win, would keep them on the podium going into the winter break.

"[Jonathan] had a very good game," he said "Renato Sanches is versatile. He can play out wide or be at the heart of the game. We're on a winning run and I don't want to disrupt the team. We expect Monaco to play a different system on Saturday. It'll be a whole different game. I don't think it gives us a psychological edge. Monaco will want to react."

Loïc Rémy, who replaced Osimhen and completed a brace in a 3-0 win on Tuesday, is likely to lead the line, however, while Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim's namesake Léo should make way for Anthony Lopes, despite making a penalty save from Islam Slimani on Tuesday.

Hex off LOSC's back?

Galtier is without Mozambique left-back Reinildo Mandava and young American forward Timothy Weah due to damaged ankle ligaments and a thigh strain respectively, but will names as close to a full-strength side as possible against a team whom they have not beaten in the league since April 2016.

Jardim publicly defended his position as coach following Tuesday's 3-0 reverse, but the principality side have won three of their last five in the league, drawing one and losing the other, to pull up to ninth in the standings.

The Portuguese will also welcome back his 11-goal top scorer Wissam Ben Yedder, as well as first-choice centre back Kamil Glik. Monaco are without versatile Germany international Benjamin Henrichs due to a back complaint, but Jardim will shore up his defence where he can.

'Unacceptable peroformance'

"We made a lot of mistakes [against Lille], mainly defensive ones," he explained. We were loose in position and lacked desire. I rotated thinking that some of these players would like to show something of themselves. It was an unacceptable performance. I understand the fans' frustration. They want to see beautiful, winning football. This match doesn't reflect how we've been playing recently."

Monaco have won five of their last six league matches against Lille. If they can extend that to six in seven they could leapfrog Stade de Reims, Girondins de Bordeaux and Olympique Lyonnais into sixth, depending on other results.


Probable teams

Monaco: Lecomte; Jemerson, Glik, Badiashile; Martins. Bakayoko, Fabregas, Dias; Golovin; Slimani, Ben Yedder

LOSC: Maignan; Çelik, Fonte, Gabriel, Bradaric; André, Soumaré; Sanches, Ikoné, Bamba; Rémy