Paris Saint-Germain may be contesting the Champions League final on Sunday, but Ligue 1 also kicks off this weekend with Monaco in action against Reims at the Stade Louis II. The French top flight is back after last season was curtailed in March, pitting the team who were in ninth at that point at home to the club who were sixth.
Where and when: Stade Louis II – 23 August, kick-off 12:00
Where you can see Monaco vs. Reims: BT Sport
Last time: Hassane Kamara cancelled out Wissam Ben Yedder’s penalty as the teams drew 1-1 at the same ground on the last day of February earlier this year.
Monaco v Reims Predictions and Preview
It’s been a long six months for Ligue 1, but Monaco and Reims are back at it as they clash at the Stade Louis II on Sunday afternoon. Former Bayern Munich coach Niko Kovac takes charge of his first game as Monaco boss after joining the club last month, while opposite number David Guion is looking to build on a solid sixth-placed finish last term.
Reims may have been helped by the intervention of the coronavirus pandemic, finishing a point above Champions League semi-finalists Lyon and ninth-placed Monaco with 10 games of the campaign remaining.
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Monaco to win and BTTS
Monaco to win 3-2
Monaco to win by one goal
That doesn’t change the fact that Les Rouges et Blancs were having a very good season though, and their squad has been bolstered by the arrival of midfielder Valon Berisha from Lazio. A trip to Monaco is a tough early test for the Marne outfit though, even if their hosts on Sunday will be missing Guinea-Bissau international Pele due to a hamstring injury.
Les Monegasques may have failed to win any of their last three Ligue 1 matches before the 2019/20 season was cancelled, and also shown some patchy form in only winning one of their last three friendly fixtures prior to the start of the new campaign, but the home team are the odds-on favourites for the win this weekend.
Monaco are unbeaten in their last four games against Reims, although three of those matches have ended in draws. The other was a 2-1 Coupe de France victory for the principality club, and Kovac’s side are priced at 9/10 to make a winning start to the new campaign here. Reims are 17/5, while you can back the draw at 3/1.
One to watch for Monaco: Wissam Ben Yedder scored 18 goals in 26 Ligue 1 appearances for Monaco last term in his first season playing for Les Monegasques. The Frenchman is certainly worth a look in the first goalscorer market for this game.
One to watch for Reims: Boulaye Dia only managed seven goals in 24 league matches last term but that was enough to see him finish as Reims’ top scorer. He could be worth an outside bet to break the deadlock on Sunday.
Long shot: Monaco’s last home win against Reims in Ligue 1 was a 3-2 victory back in 2014. If there’s an early goal this weekend we could eventually see this scoreline pay out, and it’s priced at 35/1 in your Monaco vs Reims betting tips.