One day we’ll look back on the 2016-17 AS Monaco side in disbelief — how did one club house Kylian Mbappe, Thomas Lemar, Bernardo Silva, Fabinho and Tiemoue Bakayoko (all 23 or younger) at the same time? Their Ligue 1 triumph and Champions League semifinal run will live long in the memory, but the dismantling of the most exciting side in European football has begun, starting with 22-year-old Portuguese attacker Bernardo Silva.
A team that has netted 104 goals in a single league season - with a game still left to play - deserves to be champions. With the help of a young, fearless attack paired with a seasoned goalscorer, AS Monaco ended Paris Saint-Germain's Ligue 1 trophy winning streak at four.
Mario Balotelli hasn’t appeared as often as he would’ve liked for Nice this season due to three red cards and a smattering of various injuries, but when he has played he’s been unplayable.
Super Mario made it 14 goals in only 18 Ligue 1 starts as Nice stomped Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday, effectively handing the league title to Monaco.
Newcastle United's policy of purchasing young French players and selling them for a massive profit came to end following last year’s relegation. That embarrassing demise, Newcastle’s second relegation in only eight years, proved that the club’s model of operating was disastrously shortsighted.
For every revelation that chief scout Graham Carr discovered on the cheap in Ligue 1 (Hatem Ben Arfa, Yohan Cabaye, Moussa Sissoko and Mathieu Debuchy), there were the counterpoints of Sylvain Marveaux, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Emmanuel Riviera and Remy Cabella.
Fresh off of eliminating Manchester City in the Champions League round of 16, AS Monaco travelled to Caen for a Ligue 1 match on Sunday. The people of Caen began the match by applauding their achievement, and they ended it by giving 18-year-old striker Kylian Mbappe a resounding standing ovation.
As cliche as the label of “the next Thierry Henry” is, Mbappe appears to be just that. After breaking Henry’s records for the youngest-ever senior debutant and youngest goalscorer in Monaco’s history last season, he’s quickly become one of the most feared strikers in the world.
Deemed a surplus to requirements at Manchester United by Jose Mourinho, Memphis Depay is attempting to restart his career in France with Lyon after completing a January transfer.
During his time at United, Depay scored only two goals from 33 Premier League appearances. His record with his new club reads nine Ligue 1 matches, five goals. This strike against Toulouse on Sunday has to be the pick of them all.
It began with an attempt at Zidane-esque control and ended with a display of marksmanship that sends an entire section of the crowd surging towards the pitch. As much as we love to dissect football, to break the pitch into a systematic property where order reigns, it’s a beautiful sport because it forever remains incalculable.
Mario Balotelli just might be having his most Mario Balotelli season ever for Ligue 1 club Nice. The Italian striker has an excellent 11 goals in 19 appearances, and also a not-so-excellent eight yellow cards and three sending-offs (one of which was later rescinded) in that same period.
His latest red, for dissent, came on Saturday against Lorient.