Monaco welcome the visitors Rennes in the French Coupe de la Ligue – Quarter-finals. The match will be held on Wednesday, January 9th, at the Stade Louis II (Monaco).
Monaco are not just facing a crisis; they are all screwed. The team’s last two rounds in 2018 were failing again. Now Henry’s side are taking the second last place in the standings. The winter break was of crucial importance for the club – the management could look into the situation, the head coach could decide on the squad, and the players could recover (there are around ten men injured in the team). The contract with Schalke’s forward Naldo was urgently signed, the Spanish Chelsea halfback Fabregas is about to confirm his transfer to Monaco. Also, Henry’s team will be fortified by the South African Orlando Pirates’ Foster. So, the manager and the coaching staff are total busy these days.
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Rennes had a victorious run in the end of the previous year, winning three league matches in a row. They qualified to the Europa League playoff. Now, on the high, they need to continue this series. We wish the winter break did not slow them down.
In the last round, Monaco have knocked out Lorient, while Rennes appeared stronger than Nantes. A win in the Coupe de la Ligue is not a mere formality – it provides a berth to the Europa League. Apart from succeeding in this tournament, Monaco have no other chance to get to the European competition in the next campaign. They will probably secure their spot in the league – the injured footballers will recover, the new players will be signed, and the club will most likely survive. This is not enough for the owners’ though, as they have poured millions in the club, and continue to do so. To satisfy the management’s ambitions at least partially, Monaco players need to compete in the European competitions by all means. Thus, the hosts will certainly be up in arms in the coming clash, recalling their wins over Rennes in 8 of 11 previous encounters. Tomorrow’s victory will ensure their progression to the semi-final of the Coupe de la Ligue.
Prediction for the match: Monaco to win home.