How Monaco could have lined up if they hadn’t sold their best players
Not many teams have seen the same level of transition as Monaco have in recent years. As recently as 2013, they were playing in the second division of French football. Fast forward five years, and they are considered one of the top sides in European football, having reached the Champions League semi-final and won the league title in that time.
The investment in the squad has been huge in recent years, and they have had some of the best players in Europe among their ranks over the past few seasons. Having sold a number of players during the last couple of summer transfer windows, they have had to rebuild once again.
The likes of Youri Tielemans, Stevan Jovetic and Aleksandr Golovin have all moved to the south of France, and Monaco will hope they have a squad capable of challenging for the Ligue 1 title once again.
They remain under the stewardship of Leonardo Jardim, who has proved that he is an excellent manager during his time at Monaco, and has shown that he is capable of getting the best out of a group of players.
However, the sales have hurt them in recent years, with genuine world-class talent regularly heading out the door. Here’s how they could line up if they hadn’t sold their top players.
Goalkeeper - Stephane Ruffier (Saint-Etienne)
Ruffier isn’t the biggest name that Monaco have let go of over the years, but he is someone who has gone on to have an excellent career away from the Stade Louis II. Ruffier left Monaco in 2011, after six years at the club, during which he made 130 appearances in all competitions, and was made captain.
He has been an excellent servant for Saint Etienne over the past seven seasons, and his consistently solid performances suggest Monaco may be regretting allowing Ruffier to leave.