EUROUNDUP: All Aboard the Europa League Train

EUROUNDUP: All Aboard the Europa League Train

As feared, Monaco will be a Europa League team this season, despite a sterling effort at Stade Louis II on Tuesday. The home side won the C1 play-off second leg 2-1 after goals from Andrea Raggi (again) and Elderson after Valencia’s Alvaro Negredo had twisted the knife with an early opener. However ASM could not get the crucial third goal, and now will drop to the Europa League – and maybe lose a bunch more…

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Coupe de la Ligue round-up: CA Bastia Boucher-ed

Coupe de la Ligue round-up: CA Bastia Boucher-ed

In the second round of the Coupe de la Ligue there were fourteen goals in six matches, and just the one red card this time. The early game was Evian v Clermont, and this time the TV pick got goals. Both sides are unbeaten in the league so far, but Evian were looking for their first win of the season, having four draws to their name and a bye in the first round of the cup. The…

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EUROUNDUP: Monaco Look Set for Busy Thursday Nights

EUROUNDUP: Monaco Look Set for Busy Thursday Nights

European qualifying! And it’s already shaping up to be good for those of us with not much on on Thursday evenings… First, Monaco were in action in the Champions League play-offs, in a heavyweight match-up against Valencia. They were denied a clear penalty at 2-1, and then conceded what could be the killer blow as Feghouli scored the third in the 86th minute. With Kurzawa and Abdennour both unavailable, the backline looked a little shaky, exacerbated…

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Coupe de la Ligue: Riffi-ing on Lens’ Pain

Coupe de la Ligue: Riffi-ing on Lens’ Pain

The early game was not a great spectacle as TV got hold of the only goalless encounter of the round, as Lens took on AC Ajaccio. Lens dominated but failed to convert in the face of their own flakiness and a great performance from ACA’s goalkeeper Riffi Mandanda, who was not only making his debut for his new club, but playing his first professional match. Ajaccio played for an hour down to ten men after…

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The Art of the Goal-Mouth Scramble

The Art of the Goal-Mouth Scramble

On Sunday night, as Lyon and Lorient played out a goalless draw at Gerland, one first-half incident caused some debate among team FFW. With fifteen minutes played, Fekir crashed one off the post, the rebound reaching Lacazette, whose shot was blocked by Benjamin Lecomte, the ball looping back out to the striker, who launched a flying header; cue a diving save, off the other post, and finally into the grateful arms of the goalkeeper. le foot…

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The Busiest in Europe: Ligue 1’s Departure Lounge XI

The Busiest in Europe: Ligue 1’s Departure Lounge XI

There’s still a way to go yet, but a wealth of talent has already departed Ligue 1. As if to underline the fact that France is a selling league, trying to select an XI of Ligue 1 immigrants turned out to be rather difficult, so we’ve run the rule over the list and picked out our favourites, with some honourable mentions as well. Tell us if there’s anyone we’ve missed in the comments. Goalkeeper Not a great deal…

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Defence the Best Form of Attack? Saint-Etienne Enter the Europa League

Defence the Best Form of Attack? Saint-Etienne Enter the Europa League

Another team kick off their season on Thursday with Europa League qualifying, having not really done much in the mercato so far. Saint-Etienne will play Romania’s Tirgu Mures, runners-up in Liga 1 last season, just three points behind Steaua Bucharest. How exactly they’ll approach that remains to be seen but their rather binary results from last season’s edition (featuring five draws and a loss with a massive two goals scored in the group stage) looks worryingly like…

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AS Monaco Start Campaign for Champions League Glory

AS Monaco Start Campaign for Champions League Glory

Monaco will be the first French team to kick a competitive ball this season, as they take on Swiss league runners-up Young Boys in Berne in the third qualifying round for the Champions League this Tuesday evening. Young Boys have never made it to the group stage, most recently being knocked out by Spurs in a play-off back in 2010/11, although they then made it to the knock-out stage of the Europa League; the following…

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