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Ligue 1 | Gameweek 31
Apr 28, 2024 at 6pm UK
Parc Olympique Lyonnais

3 - 2

Lacazette (22'), Benrahma (26'), Fofana (84')
Benrahma (38')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Ben Yedder (1', 60')
Minamino (25'), Ouattara (47'), Diatta (69')

Preview: Lyon vs. Monaco - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Ligue 1 clash between Lyon and Monaco, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Aiming to take a step closer to sealing a top-three finish in the Ligue 1 table, Monaco will travel to the Parc Olympique Lyonnais to meet Lyon on Sunday.

With four games left to play, the visitors sit second thanks to three straight wins with a six-point lead over fourth place in the race for Champions League qualification, while their hosts dropped to ninth spot following a defeat last time out.

Match preview

Lyon's Jake O'Brien celebrates scoring their first goal with Nicolas Tagliafico on December 2, 2023© Reuters

Lyon return to action hoping to bounce back from a heavy defeat last time out and continue a fine second half to the Ligue 1 campaign, having turned their campaign on its head since mid-December.

Les Gones endured a historically poor start to the season in France's top flight, sitting bottom of the division late in 2023 with just seven points and one win on the board from their first 14 outings, but Pierre Sage has since inspired an impressive turnaround as they now find themselves in the top half in the final run-in.

In the 16 attempts since that opening rut, they have added 34 more points to their tally courtesy of 11 victories alongside just four more defeats, eventually cracking the top eight with a particularly impressive streak in recent weeks as a draw with Reims was the only blemish on a five-match span across March and April which produced triumphs over Lorient, Toulouse, Nantes and Brest, across which Les Gones scored 12 goals.

That saw them head into their toughest test of the campaign, a trip to runaway leaders Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday, with a degree of optimism and momentum, but they were unable to extend their hot streak into the final four games, instead succumbing to a 4-1 beating in the capital having pulled the deficit back to 3-1 in the first half through Ernest Nuamah, only for Goncalo Ramos to again stretch the hosts' lead with his second of the game before the interval.

Having dropped back to ninth spot as a result of that setback, but only trailing Marseille on goal difference and seventh-placed Rennes by a single point, Lyon will bid to again strengthen their standing in the final weeks of the term and keep any faint hopes of European qualification alive, beginning with a return to winning ways at the weekend.

Monaco coach Adi Hutter reacts as Paris St Germain coach Luis Enrique looks on on November 24, 2023© Reuters

They face another particularly tricky test, though, as the visitors arrive in fine form with their sights set on further cementing their position in second spot in Ligue 1 this term.

In their bid for a top-three finish in Ligue 1 and guaranteed progression to next season's Champions League, Monaco have enjoyed a hot streak at a perfect time recently, going unbeaten in their last eight top-flight outings since late February and amassing 20 points along the way.

Following triumphs over Lens and Strasbourg alongside draws with Lorient and leaders Paris Saint-Germain, Adi Hutter's side now head into the weekend on the back of four straight three-point hauls, firstly seeing off Metz and Reims before most recently meeting fellow top-four sides Brest and Lille in back-to-back six-pointers.

Les Rouge et Blanc would leapfrog Brest and move second with a 2-0 triumph on their travels, thanks to goals from Denis Zakaria and Takumi Minamino, before hosting fourth-placed Lille on Wednesday and further strengthening their Champions League bid with a 1-0 victory courtesy of Youssouf Fofana's goal on the hour mark.

Now sitting second in Ligue 1 with a five-point lead over Brest and a six-point lead over Lille with just four games left to play, Monaco will now bid to move within touching distance of a top-two finish and Champions League qualification with a fifth straight win on Sunday.

Lyon Ligue 1 form:

Lyon form (all competitions):

Monaco Ligue 1 form:

Team News

Wissam Ben Yedder celebrates a goal for Monaco in February 2023© Reuters

Lyon will be boosted by the return of left-back Nicolas Tagliafico on Sunday, after the key man missed their trip to Paris Saint-Germain due to a suspension, and he will likely rejoin Duje Caleta-Car, Jake O'Brien and Ainsley Maitland-Niles in a back four from the outset.

At the top end of their 4-2-3-1 shape, talismanic striker Alexandre Lacazette will continue to lead the line, having notched up 15 Ligue 1 goals so far this season after hitting 27 on his return to Les Gones last time around.

He should again have support from the trio of Said Benrahma, Rayan Cherki and Ernest Nuamah, while Corentin Tolisso will hope to earn a spot in the midfield after Nemanja Matic and Maxence Caqueret were preferred at the Parc des Princes.

Monaco head into Sunday's meeting with several enforced absentees, as Eliesse Ben Seghir and key defender Wilfried Singo will continue to serve suspensions for red cards shown in their win over Brest, while Ismail Jakobs and Aleksandr Golovin remain sidelined by injuries.

They could field an unchanged starting XI from last weekend's triumph over Lille in a 4-4-2 shape, with Thilo Kehrer and Guillermo Maripan bound to continue their partnership at the heart of a back four while Denis Zakaria and Youssouf Fofana both play important roles in the midfield.

Star forward Wissam Ben Yedder will bid to end his nine-game drought and add to his tally of 11 Ligue 1 goals for the season, while Folarin Balogun should again join him up top having scored seven of his own since arriving in the summer from Arsenal, despite competition from Breel Embolo.

Lyon possible starting lineup:
Lopes; Maitland-Niles, Caleta-Car, O'Brien, Tagliafico; Tolisso, Caqueret; Benrahma, Cherki, Nuamah; Lacazette

Monaco possible starting lineup:
Majecki; Vanderson, Maripan, Kehrer, Diatta; Akliouche, Zakaria, Fofana, Minamino; Balogun, Ben Yedder

SM words green background

We say: Lyon 1-1 Monaco

Lyon's form in recent months has certainly been that of a side fighting around the top of the division with Monaco, had it been maintained throughout, and we anticipate an even contest on Sunday as a result.

The visitors travel with plenty of momentum in their bid to cement second place, but they may have to settle for a share of the points at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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