Before playing the third preliminary round of the Champions League, Monaco remains on a worrying black series on the European scene.
Over the years, it has become a recurring subject on European evenings: our UEFA index. He suffers because most French clubs experience difficulties during European meetings, often with early eliminations against supposedly inferior clubs.
And Tuesday, Monaco will start its European campaign in the Champions League. Third in Ligue 1 last year, the Monegasques will play tomorrow, in Prague, against Sparta, the third preliminary round of the Champions League. The kick-off will be at 7:00 p.m. and the return match will be played on August 10 at the Stade Louis-II.
In case of qualification, Monaco will then face, during the play-offs (qualifiers for the group stage of the Champions League), the winner of the match between Chakthar Donetsk and KRC Genk.
If the third preliminary round is never a problem for French clubs, on the other hand, the play-offs are often synonymous with berezina. A glance in the rearview mirror is also very evocative:
– August 2013: Lyon eliminated in the play-offs by Real Sociedad
– August 2014: Lille eliminated in the play-offs by FC Porto
– August 2015: Monaco eliminated in the play-offs by FC Valence
– August 2017: Nice eliminated in the play-offs by Napoli.
Lyon in 2018 and 2019 then Rennes in 2020 had been exempted from these damn dams thanks to the victories of Atlético de Madrid, Chelsea and Sevilla FC in the Europa League. The C3 offers its winner a directly qualifying place for the group stage of the Champions League. However, Atlético de Madrid, Chelsea and Sevilla FC had qualified for this competition via their national championship, allowing our French representatives to recover the vacant places.
Unfortunately for ASM, the club were unable to take advantage of it this year. Europa League winner Villarreal only finished seventh in the Spanish league.
However, there is an exception to this French curse and that’s good, it concerns Monaco. In August 2016, the principality’s club eliminated Fenerbahçe and then Villarreal to advance to the group stage of the Champions League.
What to reassure its supporters? The problem is that AS Monaco remain on a black series in European competitions: before facing Sparta Prague, ASM have not won any of their last 14 European matches, all played in the Champions League (3 draws and 11 losses). This is the worst series in progress for a French club!
The last victory of the Monegasques dates back to April 19, 2017. That day, Monaco had beaten Borussia Dortmund 3 goals to 1 in the quarter-final second leg of the Champions League. We wish Kovac and his men to be inspired by it.
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