Next Game

Nantes v Marseille

Friday, 25 April 2014, 19:30

French Ligue 1

Stade Velodrome

Last Game

Marseille 0 - 0 Lille

Sunday, 20 April 2014, 20:00

French Ligue 1

Ranieri relishing 'real test'

Claudio Ranieri is looking forward to Monaco's biggest test since returning to Ligue 1 when they travel to leaders Marseille this weekend.

Last Updated: 31/08/13 at 11:12 Post Comment

Claudio Ranieri: Looking forward to Marseille test

Claudio Ranieri: Looking forward to Marseille test

The promoted principality club have started strongly following their extensive - and expensive - summer recruitment, with two wins and a draw from their opening three games.

That still leaves them two points behind Elie Baup's side, though, and Ranieri is well aware of the task which awaits his men.

"Marseille are a good team, they play in the Champions League and for us this will be a real test," he told the club's official website.

"I want to see how my players do against this kind of team.

"What matters to me is to play and win as a team. I hope that will be the case on Sunday."

One of those summer recruits, Portugal playmaker Joao Moutinho, is in line for his Monaco debut following a thigh injury and Ranieri hopes that will benefit another, Moutinho's former Porto team-mate Radamel Falcao.

"Moutinho should play," said the Italian. "We will see how he feels after the final training session.

"I think with Moutinho in the team, Falcao will have more chances because they are used to each other."

Monaco have also added to their midfield options with the capture of France international Geoffrey Kondogbia from Sevilla for a reported 20million euros.

Marseille's 100 per cent start to the league season saw four of their players included yesterday in France's squad for their World Cup qualifiers against Georgia and Belarus.

That includes a first call-up since the 2010 World Cup for striker Andre-Pierre Gignac, to the delight of club and country colleague Mathieu Valbuena.

"I congratulate him, it is to his credit," Valbuena told the club's official website.

"He has worked quietly since he came here and he is now harvesting the fruits of that work. I hope he will put together good performances for OM and France.

"To have four OM players in the France team is very encouraging for the club and that can only help our togetherness on the pitch."

One player who has not shone in the club's stellar opening is Cameroon defender Nicolas Nkoulou, whose error gifted Guingamp their consolation goal in last week's 3-1 scoreline.

"I cannot explain my difficulties, I can't say whether it's because I returned late (for pre-season) or something else," he said.

"My error at Guingamp, I had forgotten it by the next day.

"I am working to be able to give what people expect of me."

Related News

Sky Bet

    • Retrieving latest Sky Bet odds

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

W

hy don't you call in Becks as well...and we will all have a lovely tea party!

kimosabi
United: Scholes helping out

M

ourinho is just a good-looking version of Allardyce (Fit Sam?). Clearly 19th century football isn't such a big deal after all?

Ezy_Rider
Chelsea Killed The Game Instead Of Playing It

S

tay put, Pep. Timothy Sherwood has this under control.

slowgraffiti
Guardiola plans Bayern stay

Footer 365

Premier League: Per Mertesacker backs Mesut Ozil to flourish at Arsenal

Mesut Ozil must strive for greater consistency to succeed at Arsenal, according to team-mate Per Mertesacker.

Moyes 'proud, but understands'

David Moyes has issued a statement over his Manchester United sacking - and admitted he shared the club's frustrations over his time in charge.

Premier League: Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers says the owners are happy

Brendan Rodgers is determined to sustain Liverpool's progress following discussions with the club's owners.

Mail Box

Of Course People Remember How You Won

Some have said that it doesn't matter how Chelsea played as long as they won, but is that true? Plus, we've found the one chap who enjoyed Tuesday's game...

Chelsea Got A Result, What's The Problem?

There is plenty of 'that's 90 minutes I'll never get back' sentiment about Chelsea's 'performance' in Madrid, but at least one person thinks they did what was required...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property