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Braga – Monaco in the UEFA Europa League, presentation

After a dramatic penalty shoot-out success in the UEFA Europa League knockout stage, Braga return to the Estádio Municipal to face Monaco, who qualified directly for the knockout stages in the fall as undefeated Group B winner.

• Braga emerged from their UEFA Europa League group for the third time this season, taking ten points in Group F and finishing second behind Red Star Belgrade. The Portuguese then beat Moldovan champions Sheriff Tiraspol 3-2 on penalties in February, after the two teams won 2-0 at home. Braga thus ended a series of three consecutive defeats in the knockout phase of the competition.

In two minutes, Braga 2-0 (3-2 pens) Sheriff

• After narrowly missing out on UEFA Champions League qualification last summer, Monaco have won three and drawn three in the UEFA Europa League group stage, taking four points from Sturm Graz in PSV Eindhoven and Real Sociedad, who also qualified.

Braga – Monaco, the pre-match live

Previous meetings
• This is the first meeting between the two clubs in UEFA competition.

• Braga have been eliminated in their last two knockout matches against French sides, against Paris Saint-Germain in the 2008/09 UEFA Cup Round of 16 (0-0, 0-1) and against Marseille in the Round of 16. 2017/18 UEFA Europa League final (0-3, 1-0). His only other matches against a French club also came against Marseille, in the 2015/16 UEFA Europa League group stage (3-2, 0-1).

In two minutes, Monaco 2-1 Real Sociedad

• Monaco have lost five of their nine matches against Portuguese teams (2 wins, 2 draws), including the 3-0 loss to Porto in the 2004 UEFA Champions League final in Gelsenkirchen. The only time the Princes avoided defeat in Portugal was on their first visit, when they drew 1-1 at Belenenses in the first leg of the 1989 UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup first round /90 before qualifying – their only home and away game against Portuguese opponents – 4-1 on aggregate.

In addition to their three away defeats against Portuguese clubs, Monaco lost the 1992 European Cup Winners’ Cup final in Lisbon, losing 2–0 to Werder Bremen.

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On the teamsare

• Braga’s qualification for the 2021/22 UEFA Europa League group stage, the club’s 17th European qualification in the last 18 years, was achieved on two fronts: a fourth place in the Portuguese La Liga and a third victory in the Portuguese Cup, obtained thanks to a 2-0 victory against Benfica in the final.

Last season, Carlos Carvalhal’s side reached the UEFA Europa League Round of 16, where they lost 5-1 on aggregate to Roma.

• Runners-up to Leicester City in last season’s group stage, Braga also had to settle for second place this year. A 1-1 draw at home to Crvena zvezda on matchday six forced Arsenalistas into second place in Group F behind champions Serbia, who beat them 2-1 in Belgrade on matchday one. Six of Braga’s ten points came at the expense of Ludogorets (1-0, 4-2), while they took three points from Midtjylland (3-1, 2-3) to finish ahead of the Danes.

In two minutes, Braga 4-2 Ludogorets

• The northern Portuguese side are in the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 for the third time. Despite having been beaten in the round of 16 in each of their last three appearances, Braga’s side have a perfect record at this stage of the competition, having eliminated Liverpool in 2010/11 (1-0, 0-0) en route to the final, which they lost in Dublin to Porto, and Fenerbahçe in 2015/16 (0-1, 4-1).

• Braga’s record at home in the UEFA Europa League knockout stage is 6 wins, 2 draws and 4 losses, with the 2-0 win against Sheriff last time out coming after back-to-back defeats by Rangers (0 -1) and Roma (0-2).

• Third in Ligue 1 last season, five points behind champions LOSC Lille, Monaco return to Europe in 2021/22 after two seasons away.

• The Principality side had their sights set on a tenth appearance in the UEFA Champions League group stage this year, but after beating Sparta Praha convincingly in the third qualifying round, the men by Niko Kovač were eliminated in the play-offs by Shakhtar Donetsk after extra time, which allowed them to access the group stage of the UEFA Europa League, where they won against Sturm (1-0, 1- 1), Real Sociedad (1-1, 2-1) and PSV (2-1, 0-0).

Highlights: PSV 1-2 Monaco

• Kovač was replaced as head coach in January by Philippe Clement, who joined from Belgian champions Club Brugge.

• This is Monaco’s first UEFA Europa League round of 16 appearance, their only previous appearance in the competition proper having ended in the 2015/16 group stage. The Princes were UEFA Champions League semi-finalists in 2016/17.

• Monaco are unbeaten on their trips to Europe this year (2 wins, 3 draws), but the win at Eindhoven on Matchday 3 is the only away win they have achieved in their last ten competitive matches UEFA outside the qualifying phase (D5 L4), since a 3-2 victory at Borussia Dortmund in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg.

UEFA Europa League squad changes

Added : David Carmo, Dinis Pinto, Bernardo Fontes
Withdrawn : Mario González (Tenerife, loan), Chiquinho (Benfica, end of loan), Raul Silva (Estoril, loan), Lucas Piazón, Galeno (Porto)

Added : Vanderson (Gremio), Jean Marcelin
Withdrawn : Krepin Diatta, Wilson Isidor (Lokomotiv Moskva)

In two minutes: Monaco 1-0 Sturm

We know each other…
• 21-year-old Portuguese international Gelson Martins joined the club from Atlético de Madrid in 2019 after starting his career at Sporting CP, where his record against Braga was 3 wins, 1 draw and 3 losses. He notably played alongside current Braga players Paulo Oliveira and Iuri Medeiros at the Lisbon club.

• Braga have 19-year-old French midfielder Jean-Baptiste Gorby in their squad. He joined the club as a player in the Nantes youth team in 2019.

• The clubs met in a goalless friendly in Braga on July 24, 2019.

• Portuguese coach Leonardo Jardim has been in charge of both clubs. Braga boss in 2011/12, he led Monaco to the French Ligue 1 title and the UEFA Champions League semi-finals in 2016/17.

• Braga have scored exactly 100 goals in the UEFA Europa League, from group stage to final, becoming the 13th club to reach the total in the competition – and Portugal’s third, after Sporting (109) and Benfica (102). ) – when Ricardo Horta scored his second goal against Sheriff on February 24.

• Playing for Braga in the first leg of the knockout stage against Sheriff, Roger Fernandes became, at the age of 16 years and 88 days, the youngest participant in the UEFA Europa League, from the group stage to the final.

• Braga are one of three current domestic cup winners in the UEFA Europa League round of 16, along with FC Barcelona and Crvena zvezda.

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