Monaco are going head-to-head with Bayer Leverkusen at the Stade Louis II stadium in their UEFA Europa League second-leg playoff tie. The French side pulled off a miraculous 3–2 victory with two late goals in the first leg in Germany, so a win or draw in this match will be enough to see them move on. The team must demonstrate the same commitment and tenacity they demonstrated in the first leg if they want to be successful in this upcoming match. We now take a look at some of the stats that show what the first leg looked like and how Monaco can seal the deal to move forward in the competition.
The viz above shows the percentile rank of both teams’ stats compared to each other as well as to other teams in the UEFA Champions League 2022–23 for Bayer Leverkusen and the UEFA Europa League 2022–23 for Monaco.
It can be seen that Monaco have an upper hand in overall stats in most departments. Notably, the visitors have the upper hand in terms of accurate passes and high-pressure success and are level in opposition entries per 90. Alternatively, there are a couple of departments where the hosts have slightly better stats, such as possession and recoveries per 90.
Monaco maintains 50.28% possession and attempts 451.14 passes on average with an accuracy of 82.1%. They make 85.86 recoveries per 90 minutes. Whereas, Bayer Leverkusen keeps the ball for 52.21% of the match on average, attempting 494.67 passes with an accuracy of 85.8%. Additionally, they make 86.5 recoveries per match.
Leverkusen’s threat in attack
Leverkusen came out of the game disappointed not to have gotten more out of the match. The German club amassed an xG of 2.3, significantly higher than that of their opponents. They had eight shots on target out of 16 with an accuracy rate of 50%. The team scored two goals in ten minutes in the second half to take a 2-1 lead in the tie but fell apart when Monaco managed to do the same in the final stages of the match. They had an xG of 0.12 per shot. The team scored both goals from around the penalty spot and also managed to take four shots on target from a distance.
The hosts created 34 positional attacks, and they took 12 shots from these attacks. Bayer Leverkusen were very threatening from the centre, and their second-best chances came from the left flank.
Monaco’s ability to sit-back
Monaco were left wide open down the middle given the Germans’ overall possession and build-up-based gameplay. Playing away from home, the French side had a deeper backline and was at times forced to tuck back and prevent dangerous attacks from unfolding. The team made a total of 51 interceptions in the match, compared to 103 recoveries, of which only 11 were in Leverkusen’s half.
Monaco’s intent to score
Monaco managed to score two late goals in the game to secure a win. The team ended the match with an overall xG of only 0.57, having scored two from nine shots with five shots on target. They had only 0.06 xG per shot and scored both goals from some distance outside the box. The French side managed to take three shots on target from inside the box as well but failed to find the back of the net.
Monaco made 23 positional attacks, of which only three ended with a shot attempt on goal. Most of their efficiency was on the right flank, but the team made more attacks from the centre. Finally, it was their high intent to score that saw them rack up two goals in the final quarter of the game, which is what it comes down to in big games.
Key player for Monaco
Although he did not score in the first leg after being subbed on in the 62nd minute for Monaco, Wissam Ben Yedder managed to provide one assist in the match, setting up Diatta for the equalising goal. The French striker has been in top form for Monaco domestically and has managed to score three goals in the Europa League this season. He has scored two goals (2.36 xG) from open play after taking ten shots and averaging 0.24 xG per shot. His contributions have been the difference for his side this season, and Monaco will surely need him to be in top form once again in order to sail through to the next round.
Monaco will be missing Vanderson, Guillermo Maripan, Gelson Martins, Ruben Aguilar, and Kevin Volland due to injury concerns.
Meanwhile, Leverkusen will be without the likes of Charles Aranguiz, Andrey Lunyov, and Moussa Diaby due to injuries.
Overall, Monaco needs to maintain their defensive shape and work hard to deny Bayer Leverkusen space and time on the ball. They must also look to create chances of their own and take any chances that come their way. Finally, if they can remain focused for the full 90 minutes, Monaco will have a great chance of advancing to the quarterfinals.
Visuals via Wyscout and TFA data viz engine