Preview: Monaco vs. Auxerre

Preview: Monaco vs. Auxerre

Fresh from extending their unbeaten run in Ligue 1 to five games, Monaco will be confident of heaping more misery on lowly Auxerre when they meet at the Stade Louis II on Wednesday.

Auxerre find themselves second from bottom in the Ligue 1 table – 25 points shy of fourth-placed Monaco – having lost each of their previous six league outings.

Monaco head into Wednesday’s clash on the back of a 1-1 draw with Marseille, despite seeing less than 40% possession and facing more than 20 shots at the Stade Velodrome.

As a result, the Monegasques now find themselves five points behind third-placed Marseille, with Paris Saint-Germain and Lens setting the pace in the race for the title.

Monaco have lost just four of their 20 Ligue 1 games this season, picking up 11 wins and five draws along the way, and they have suffered a solitary defeat in their previous eight league outings, securing five wins and two draws in the process.

Thanks to a 7-1 victory over Ajaccio in mid-January, Philippe Clement’s men boast the second-best offensive record in the division, as only PSG have scored more goals than Monaco’s 43 this term.

Wissam Ben Yedder has netted 11 goals in 17 league appearances this season, while Breel Embolo has scored 10 in 20, so the Red and Whites will fancy their chances of recording a fourth victory in five home games.

When Auxerre gained promotion via the Ligue 2 playoffs last year, Jean-Marc Furlan would have been hopeful of keeping the club in the top flight, but the veteran manager was sacked in October after overseeing a run of five defeats in six matches.

Former Lorient manager Christophe Pelissier was appointed as Furlan’s successor, but the Burgundy outfit have continued to experience the same problems, winning just one of their 10 league outings since Furlan’s departure.

In fact, Auxerre head into Wednesday’s encounter on a six-game losing streak in Ligue 1, while Pelissier’s men have conceded 17 goals since claiming their last point.

To make matters worse, Auxerre have failed to score in each of their last four league games – and five of their previous six – meaning they have the joint-worst offensive record in the division.

Having registered one win, one draw and eight losses at home in the league this season, Auxerre sit five points from safety with 18 games remaining, so they will need to up their game if they want to avoid an immediate return to the second tier.

Monaco Ligue 1 form:

Monaco form (all competitions):

Auxerre Ligue 1 form:

Auxerre form (all competitions):

We say: Monaco 3-0 Auxerre

Monaco are the second-highest scorers in Ligue 1, while Auxerre have the second-worst defensive record in the division, so the hosts look set to claim a comfortable victory on Wednesday, condemning the visitors to a seventh straight league defeat.

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