AS Monaco let a two-goal lead slip against Ligue 2 strugglers Rodez before ultimately losing on penalties in one of the shocks of the Coupe de France gameweek (2-2, 4-5 on penalties).
Monaco fielded a strong side for their first appearance in the 2022/23 edition of the Coupe de France. Captain Wissam Ben Yedder started up front, whilst Maghnes Akliouche and Soungoutou Magassa added a sprinkling of youth to the side. Both youngsters took their chance to stake a claim for more game time.
The former got on the scoresheet midway through the first half, scoring his first professional goal with a well-hit drive from within the box. Les Monégasques lead was soon doubled through Ben Yedder, who returned to the lineup after having not featured against Brest in Ligue 1 a week earlier.
However, Rodez found a surprise route back into the match through Joseph Mendes, who worked a couple of yards on Malang Sarr before heading past Thomas Didillon, who was making his Monaco debut after making a loan move from Cercle Brugge in the summer.
Both sides could, and should, have increased their respective accounts after the break. Akliouche had two huge chances to double his professional goal tally, but he was denied by smart stops from Sébastien Cibois.For Rodez, they should have found the back of the net from at least one of their three good chances, the best of which fell to Andy Pembélé, whose shot was saved by the legs of Didillon.
Monaco continued to manufacture half-chances but failed to put the game to bed, and were punished in the 80th minute when Aymen Abdennour got on the end of a flick-on to level the scores. A former player at the Principality club, the defender chose not to celebrate the equaliser that set up a tense end to the match at the Stade Louis II.
Didillon once again came to the rescue with just two minutes of regulation time remaining, save from Clement Depres at close-range. Substitute Youssouf Fofana had one final chance to win the match before penalties, but lacked composure and blasted over from close range.
The game, therefore, went to penalties, where Monaco drew first blood, Didillon saving from Killian Corredor. Aleksandr Golovin then stepped up to take a penalty to win the tie, but dramatically blazed over. Depres then scored to take the game to sudden death. Magassa then missed and Pembélé made no mistake, stepping up to send Rodez through and shock Monaco.
GFFN | Luke Entwistle