Monaco saw their 10-match unbeaten run come to an end on Wednesday after they suffered a 3-0 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen at the BayArena on Wednesday.
- Bayer Leverkusen 3 Monaco 0
- Yurchenko opens scoring in first half
- De Sanctis keeps the scoreline down
- Brandt makes it 2-0 after break
- Wendell penalty goes in off De Sanctis
Roger Schmidt’s side should have led by more than just the only goal at half-time, but Morgan De Sanctis was in fine form for the Ligue 1 club.
The opener arrived on the half-hour from the boot of Vladlen Yurchenko, who struck an unstoppable curling shot into the top corner of the net, before Julian Brandt extended Bayer’s lead soon after the break.
Wendell sealed the win on 82 minutes from the penalty spot, although it will go down as an own-goal from De Sanctis after the ball came back off the crossbar and hit the keeper before creeping over the line.
Despite the fact that both teams had already qualified for the knockout stages, the football on offer was quite entertaining.
The hosts created the better chances in the first half and they threatened for the first time after seven minutes when Julian Brandt’s backheel let in Wendell, whose cut-back on the left to Javier Hernandez saw the Mexican hit a firm shot that was well saved by Morgan De Sanctis.
Les Rouges et Blancs broke upfield from the resulting corner with numbers, but Boschilia chose the wrong option to shoot from range and the ball flew way over the crossbar.
Hernandez was desperate to break his goal-scoring drought and the striker tried his luck from 19 yards out after being sent through on goal by Stefan Kiessling’s backheel, but De Sanctis easily dealt with the tame effort.
Yurchenko failed to trouble the keeper from the edge of the box on 24 minutes after a free-kick had only been half-cleared into his path, while Hernandez was again denied by a super save from De Sanctis five minutes later as he latched onto Brandt’s low cross on the right.
However, the deadlock was broken soon afterwards when Yurchenko picked up the ball outside the area on the left and ran across the edge of the box before curling home into the top-right corner of the net from 20 yards out.
— Bayer 04 Leverkusen (@bayer04_en) December 7, 2016
Aleksandar Dragovic went close to doubling Bayer’s advantage on 34 minutes, but his close-range header from Kiessling’s cross was expertly kept out by De Sanctis.
Leverkusen took their one-goal lead into the break and it quickly became two early in the second half when Hakan Calhanoglu played in Brandt, who beat De Sanctis with the aid of a deflection from Jemerson on 48 minutes.
Corentin Jean almost halved the deficit eight minutes later as he connected with Joao Moutinho’s pass from the left, but he directed the ball against the base of the near post from six yards out.
Wendell had a sniff at goal in the 64th minute when he collected the ball on the edge of the area, but he pulled his shot wide of the right post.
The result was put beyond doubt with eight minutes remaining when Abdou Diallo fouled Robbie Kruse inside the area on the right for a penalty. Wendell’s spot-kick struck the crossbar but the ball bounced down and hit De Sanctis before rolling back over the line.
Almamy Toure had a good chance to pull one back two minutes later from Moutinho’s corner, but steered his header wide at the near post from a few yards out, while Hernandez flashed an effort just wide of the left post from range in stoppage time.