Lorient make the trip to the Principality for their clash against Monaco on Sunday at the Stade Louis II. With both teams inside the top of the Ligue 1 table, Lorient and Monaco have slightly different aspirations for the rest of the season. Monaco are continuing their push for European football whereas Lorient are trying to close the gap to the top six.
Monaco currently sits fourth in Ligue 1 with 58 points from 30 games. Philippe Clement’s side have 17 wins, seven draws and six losses putting them in the spot for qualification straight into the Europa League Group Stage. Monaco are only three points adrift of third-place Marseille in the Champions League Qualifiers and five points behind second-place Lens who sit in the last Champions League Group Stage spot.
In their last five Ligue 1 games, Monaco have registered two wins, two draws and a loss. Their singular loss came in mid-March to eighth-place Reims, a 1 - 0 loss with Arsenal loanee Folarin Balogun bagging the win for Reims. The two draws came as quite a shock, with two 2 - 2 draws against teams in the bottom half of the table - 14th place Nantes and 18th place Troyes. Monaco’s two wins weren’t without drama. Their first win came against 19th-place Ajaccio where Wissam Ben Yedder and Krepin Diatta scored for Monaco and Cyrille Bayala was given a red for Ajaccio. The other win was a seven-goal thriller against 17th-place Strasbourg. Goals from Vanderson, Eliesse Ben Seghir, Edan Diop and Youssouf Fofana pushed Monaco ahead and protected them from the late push from Strasbourg following the dismissal of Fofana.
Lorient, on the other hand, sit tenth in Ligue 1. Regis Le Bris’ side have picked up 45 points in 30 games, registering 12 wins, nine draws and nine losses. Lorient have a five-point gap to Clermont Foot in 11th, and with a win could move up to seventh. In fact, Lorient only sit seven points behind Lille in the last European Football spot, though there are six teams in contention.
Lorient’s last five games in Ligue 1 have been one win, three draws and one loss. Lorient’s March began with a goalless draw against fifth-place Lyon, followed by a 2 - 0 win over Troyes with goals from Bamba Dieng and Stephane Diarra in added time. The next game out was against ninth-place Nice where Lorient took the lead through Abdoul Bamo Meite but eventually came away with a single point after the Gaetan Laborde equaliser and Igor Carioca’s red card. The following game against Lille saw yet another red card for Lorient, this time Laurent Abergel, as Lille won 3 - 1. Their most recent game saw Lorient play out another goalless draw, this time against third-place Marseille.
Monaco and Lorient have played each other only 23 times in their histories. The hosts have the majority of the wins with ten wins, whereas Lorient have only won five times with the points being shared on eight occasions.
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