Sochaux vs Monaco by Lucien
Sochaux is having very disappointing season so far in Ligue 2, as the team currently stands second form the bottom, having two points less than safely placed Nimes. They generally look below decent in the whole season and now there is no doubt that the team awaits really difficult relegation battle till the very end of the season.
After three consecutive draws in Ligue 2, Sochaux suffered defeat last Friday evening at home against Red Star 1:2, even though they were leading at the half-time. Hosts took the lead in seventh minute via Teikeu, but the visitors were the ones who looked like having more control over the ball. Mekhedjou equalized in 60th minute, while the players of Sochaux paid the price of being too passive and careless towards the end of the game and conceded once more, in 87th minute via Ngamukol. Having in mind that defeat, but also their overall situation, atmosphere in the club can't be at a very great level ahead of important Cup match.
Monaco, on the other side, has only one goal regarding Ligue 1 and that would be securing of second position and getting direct Champions League ticket. With two consecutive victories now, the target is really realistic as they have currently six points more than third placed Nice and it would be really huge surprise not seeing them just behind PSG in the end.
In the most recent game, Monaco won harder than expected at home against Nice with a narrow 1:0 result last weekend. Only goal was scored in 81st minute via Bakayoko, with the team being quite competitive during the first halftime, but then switching to a defensive role once they stood playing with a man less at the start of second half when forward Dirar got red carded. As for Cup competition, this would be one of rare ways to bring more joy to their fans and no doubt that the team like Monaco always looks for title in such way. Defender Fabio Coentrao (14/3) continues to be sidelined for couple of more weeks. Left full back Elderson (11/0) is close to recovery, but the game comes probably too soon for him, similar to defensive midfielder Jeremy Toulalan (14/0). Offensive Ivan Cavaleiro (9/0) and forward Lacina Traore (11/2), but all with limited influence in this season's performances of the team.
Sochaux already surprised by winning on the road against Bastia in previous round, however taking out in-form Monaco would be too much of a task for them. Easy or hard, visitors should be able to claim the progress within the first ninety minutes.