Monaco-Marseille the pick of the games in Round of 32
AS Monaco and Olympique de Marseille - winners of the Coupe de la Ligue three times apiece - have been drawn together in the competition's Round of 32…
Wednesday, 30 October 2019
Coupe de la Ligue KT, Round of 32
Stade Louis II, Monaco
AS Monaco - Olympique de Marseille
Monaco welcome Marseille to the Stade Louis II on Wednesday enjoying a significant uptick in form. When the draw was made on 19 September, Monaco were in the Ligue 1 Conforama relegation places, four days on from a 4-3 loss at home to Marseille.
But the timing for Leonardo Jardim's side to exact some revenge could hardly be better given the two side's form. While the principality side have won four of their last five games, OM have only won one of theirs, leaving Monaco just a single point behind Wednesday's visitors in the league.
'Always respected the Coupe'
"It's a competition we've always respected," Jardim said of the Coupe de la Ligue at his pre-match press conference. "We've been to the final twice and played a semi-final in recent years. Yes, I'll make changes, but we have a lot of solutions in the squad. The Coupe de la Ligue us a good competition for teams not playing in Europe."
A Coupe winner two years ago, Jardim will rotate his side to some degree, then. Top scorer Wissam Ben Yedder is likely to be be rested, while his usual partner in attack, Islam Slimani, struggling with a groin injury. Look for Keita Baldé and Jean-Kévin Augustin to lead the line.
Watch: Highlights of Marseille's 4-3 win over Monaco last month
Jardim's opposite number and Portuguese compatriot André Villas-Boas is unlikely to change his starting XI to the same degree, with the pressure on securing a win perhaps greater on him given OM's recent malaise.
Marseille were beaten 4-0 by Paris Saint-Germain last Sunday, but a couple of players did enough to impress to OM boss.
"They're a point behind us and in good form. We aren't. My players' courage was admirable [against PSG], and 4-4-2 is an option. Our big hero of this match is [Jordan] Amavi. Marley Aké has a chance to play. His performance off the bench was very good, his movement and physicality are incredible in training. After that there won't be too much rotation."
Nine other Ligue 1 Conforama teams are in action on Wednesday, with Stade de Reims the most concerned to avoid a banana skin when they take on the only Championnat National side left in the competition, Football Bourg-en-Bresse Péronnas 01.
Monaco: Lecomte; Jemerson, Maripan, Badiashile; Aguilar, Henrichs, Golovin, Ballo-Touré; Fabregas; Baldé, Augustin
Marseille: Mandanda; Sakai, Kamara, Caleta-Car, Amavi; Rongier, Strootman, Sanson; Sarr, Aké, Payet