A determined AS Monaco side managed to make it four wins in a row with a home victory against formidable Ligue 1 rivals Lille on the evening of Wednesday, April 24. A memorable match with HSH Prince Albert in attendance, and the Principality side’s 2400th on the elite stage of football.

AS Monaco President Dmitry Rybolovlev, Stéphane Morandi, member of the Board of Directors of AS Monaco, and HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco

This victory was never certain, as the many supporters that packed the stands of the Stade Louis II found themselves on the edge of their seats on multiple occasions throughout the match. Lille provided the first of such occasions through Gabriel Gudmundsson at the third minute, but his shot was safely contained by Radoslaw Majecki in between the host’s posts.

Monaco midfielder Takumi Minamino came oh so close to opening the scoring at the 20 minute mark, but his powerful long shot skimmed the crossbar. The Monegasques then became more comfortable in their opponents’ half of the pitch, but were unable to get on the scoreboard until the second half of the match.

After just over an hour without a change on said scoreboard, Youssouf Fofana found the back of the net to the delight of the goal deprived spectators. The Monaco midfielder struck a low ball wide of the helpless visiting goalkeeper and into the bottom corner to make it 1-0 at the 62nd minute.

Team captain Wissam Ben Yedder came close to doubling the hosts’ lead at the 69th minute but was stopped in his path by a more attentive Lille goalie.

There were plenty of happy Monaco fans in the stands shortly thereafter, as Breel Embolo returned to the pitch of the Stade Louis II for the first time since sustaining a knee injury eight months ago. The Swiss striker was not able to score on his home comeback before the full time whistle signalled a 1-0 win, but looked to be a fighting fit forward, providing a necessary physical presence on the frontline.

This win consolidates the Principality side’s second place position in the French championship, taking them five points clear of third place Brest and closer to UEFA Champions League qualification. The next match will see Monaco take on Lyon at their Olympic Park on Sunday, April 28.

All images courtesy of AS Monaco