8 August 2014 13:41
Leonardo Jardim has been pleased with the start Monaco have made under his leadership as he prepares for his first Ligue 1 game at the helm.
Having replaced Claudio Ranieri at the Stade Luis II in June, the Portuguese head coach has seen his new side win five of their six friendly matches – including a 1-0 victory over Arsenal last weekend.
However, their preparations have been disrupted by speculation linking their top stars with moves away.
Already the 40-year-old has seen star forward James Rodriguez depart for Real Madrid and speculation continues to link striker Radamel Falcao with a move away from the club.
Falcao is unlikely to start the first game of the league campaign against Lorient on Sunday due to a lack of fitness following a knee injury, but Jardim believes his side are in good shape to make a winning start to the season.
“We have worked hard for six weeks to be ready,” he said at a media conference on Friday. “We want to start with a good game on Sunday
“I know who will play. Falcao is not 100 per cent yet but is ready to be included in the group.
“The team is confident after the six friendlies. We do everything to have a good quality of football.
“My style of play is to have the ball go through the sides playing very compact. I also like that my press team the opponent very high.
“Monaco are a very ambitious team. We will do everything to win and play good football.”
Under Ranieri, Monaco finished nine points adrift of champions Paris Saint-Germain on their return to the French top flight.