The formation of Niko Kovac, with a few liners in the starting XI, managed to defeat Sturm Graz (1-0), at the opening of the Europa League.
After the great disappointment of the elimination in the Champions League play-offs, the fault of this unfair result in the return match against Shakhtar (2-2, ap), theAS Monaco started the Europa League with a small 1-0 victory over Strum Graz, the weakest team in its group, on Thursday night at the Stade Louis-II. The shock against Real Sociedad, in two weeks in the Basque Country, promises to be much more difficult.
Faced with the last third in the Austrian Bundesliga, Niko Kovac gave playing time to a few substitutes, since Krepin Diatta and Ismail Jakobs were the lanes of the traditional 3-2-4-1, Eliot Matazo played in midfield alongside Aurélien Tchouaméni, while Wilson Isidor and Gelson Martins accompanied Kevin Volland within the axial attacking trio.
Despite a big domination, the Monegasques did not get enough clear situations and their German-Croatian coach upset the team by launching Caio Henrique, Cesc Fabregas and Aleksandr Golovin at half-time, then Wissam Ben Yedder at the hour mark (61st). A center of Golovin thus allowed Diatta to find the fault of the head (66th)!
ASM made a good operation in the standings since PSV and Real shared the points (2-2), on the side of Eindhoven. After the opener from Mario Götze (32nd), Adnan Januzaj (34th) and Alexander Isak (39th) turned the situation around for the San Sebastian team. Cody Gakpo reset the counters (54th) and Imanol Alguacil’s men then missed the opportunity to win.
🔥 Diatta frees Monaco by opening the scoring with a header on a service from Golovin
📺 Monaco-Sturm Graz is to be experienced live on RMC Sport 1 pic.twitter.com/lmYPZ6abXV
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