Nübel’s stay at Monaco could be cut short

The knock-on effects of a season-ending injury to Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer could see Alexander Nübel’s stay at AS Monaco cut short.

As reported by Sky Germany‘s Florian PlettenbergBayern Munich are in contact with the Principality club about repatriating Nübel. The German goalkeeper has been at Monaco since the beginning of the 2020/21 season, and initially was contracted to be at the club until the end of the current campaign.

However, there is a desire within the club to possibly retain Nübel at the end of the current season. With two-and-a-half years remaining on his deal at the Bundesliga champions, sporting director Paul Mitchell is apparently interested in prolonging his stay, potentially with a view to a further loan deal.

Whilst there may be a desire to keep Nübel, there is no certainty that he will remain at the club, even until the end of his contracted loan. Following Germany’s World Cup exit, Bayern Munich’s number one Neuer broke his leg in a skiing accident, prematurely curtailing his season.

Consequently, the Bavarian club suddenly find themselves short of a goalkeeper. An easy option and one that they are currently exploring is recalling Nübel. According to Plettenberg, Bayern Munich have made contact with Monaco regarding the goalkeeper’s potential return.

Monaco are seemingly unwilling to let Nübel leave, and with no recall clause in his contract, Bayern Munich will have to negotiate with the Principality club in order to complete the operation. Monaco’s will to keep the player looks set to be tested.


Photo by Monaco Life


What’s on in Monaco this December?

Monaco Life rounds up the December highlights of the Principality’s event calendar. 

Family Pick – The Drama Group of Monaco, the only English-speaking amateur theatre company in the Principality, is putting on a Christmas pantomime of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, and after selling out of all tickets on 15th December, the troupe has decided to add another date to the calendar: 16th December. Families can expect great laughs and sing-along moments, but it’s crucial to book in advance for this super popular performance! Please visit www.dramagroup.com for more information.  

Sports Pick – The Golden Foot Awards are taking place on 21st December at the Grimaldi Forum, just days after the conclusion of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Stars such as current Ballon d’Or holder Karim Benzema, Lionel Messi, Gareth Bale, Harry Kane, and Neymar are all in line to pick up the prize and make quite a literal mark in footballing history, with the winner having their foot printed onto the Promenade des Champions. A former legend of the game, Juan Sebastien Veron, as well as current Turkey manager Fatih Térim will also be present at the ceremony. For more information, visit the website by clicking here

Theatre Pick – Two theatre picks for this month! The Audiovidual Institute of Monaco is presenting a true cinematic classic, Robert Wise’s West Side Story, at the Grimaldi Forum on 18th December then the magnificent retelling of Faust will awe the audience between 27th and 31st December as the dancers of Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo, guided by the ever-talented Jean-Christophe Maillot, bring to life this emotional tale. For more information on both events, please click here.

Classical Pick – The ethereal voices of the Monaco Boys Choir will be complemented by the talented musicians of the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra on 28th December as Peter Szüts and Pierre Debat direct a classical concert at the Monaco Cathedral. The evening promises to deliver nine stunning performances of classical scores composed by masters such as Mozart, Handel, and Bach and performed by some of the most talented artists in the Principality. Entry is free and the full list of artists can be found here

Party Pick – Bring in the New Year at the Grimaldi Forum’s showstopping Cloud9 event from 10.30pm to 6am on 31st December. Deep house DJ &ME will electrify the stage and food stalls will contribute to this festival-like occasion. Click here for more information. 

And we can’t forget the beautiful Christmas in Spitsbergen village down on Port Hercule or the dazzling Société des Bains de Mer display in Place du Casino that will be buzzing with activity right through the festive season.

There’s simply no place like Monaco at Christmas!



Photo source: Monaco Communications Department

UNESCO reveals latest list of protected traditions

In a triumph for biodiversity and environmental protection, more than two thirds of new entries to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list relate to these very serious issues.  

Hosted by Morocco from 28th November to 3rd December in Rabat, the 17th intergovernmental meeting of the Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage was attended by 2,000 participants from more than 110 countries including the Principality of Monaco, which was represented by Anne-Marie Boisbouvier, an ambassador and permanent delegate to UNESCO, and Agatha Korczak, First Secretary for the Monegasque government at the organisation. 

In total, the committee voted to add 47 new items to its lists for protection and good practices regarding non-tangible heritage worldwide. Most notably, a significant one-third of the approved inscriptions are related to nature and a further third concern practices linked to protection of the environment such as agricultural techniques that promote sustainable use of resources. 

Examples on the latest list include beekeeping in Slovenia, the traditions and practices related to the date palm in the Arab region, the knowledge and skills pertaining to harissa in Tunisia, the cultivation of Khawlani coffee beans in Saudi Arabia, and the traditions of timber rafting in Austria, Czechia, Germany, Latvia, Poland and Spain.  

This recognition of the environment and the urgent need to safeguard the biodiversity of the Earth comes shortly after the recent release of the No Paris without Montreal declaration. The urgent call to action, tabled at the recent COP15 convention, urged the world’s leaders to step up and act in the face of the climate crisis and, more specifically, to focus future efforts and actions on the protection and safeguarding of biodiversity. 

As a contributor to the funding of the committee, UNESCO acknowledged and thanked the work of the Principality of Monaco during the meeting.  


Photo source: Monaco Communications Department

COP15: FPA2 urges world leaders to “seize the opportunity”

The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation has made a heartfelt plea urging world leaders at COP15 not to be distracted by the current geopolitical and energy crises. 

Mixed sentiments and a general feeling of disappointment surround the outcomes of the recent COP27 conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, which concluded on 20th November, and many have expressed frustration and dismay at the lacklustre decisions and lack of concrete commitments made in the face of the climate emergency.  

With the COP15 conference underway in Montreal until 19th December, the concern of the Fondation Prince Albert II (FPA2) is that this lack of positive results may be set to repeat itself.  

“Although there should be no hierarchy, climate issues still often take precedence over those related to biodiversity,” said the FPA2 via an official communiqué. “The issue of life is just as serious and just as urgent as the one of climate… Biodiversity continues to collapse and species are disappearing at a frightening rate. This is why we must seize the opportunity of COP15 to set an ambitious framework for action to halt this erosion. ” 

The FPA2 also called for the need to provide economic and financial support to the “more vulnerable” developing countries that are often at the forefront of suffering due to climate and biodiversity issues yet lack the economic means to take action. 

“The geopolitical and energy crises we are experiencing should not distract us from our priorities,” continued the FPA2. “Let us keep in mind that the fight against climate change and against the erosion of biodiversity is a sine qua non for the future of humanity on Earth. There is no doubt that the next few years will be decisive.” 

The foundation and its namesake, Prince Albert II, have firmly aligned themselves with the No Paris without Montreal declaration tabled at COP15, which brings together nearly 100 signatories, from NGOs to scientific institutes and financial institutions. 

The declaration lists 12 key steps that will “right the ship for the ocean and its biodiversity” and calls for the global protection of at least 30% of land and the ocean by 2030. 


Photo source: FPA2/Facebook

Covid hospitalisations on the rise in Monaco

The number of severe Covid cases has risen again in Monaco, with 46 people now being treated for the virus at the Princess Grace Hospital Centre, 10 more than the previous week.

The health department’s latest figures show that, in the weekend ending Sunday 11th December, the Principality registered 177 new cases of Covid-19 among its residents. That figure is less than the 210 recorded the previous week, however the number of hospitalisations is on the rise.

The number of severe Covid cases – those being treated at hospital – has jumped from 10, to 38, to 48 in the space of just two weeks, and the majority, 36, of those live in the Principality.

Meanwhile, three non-residents are in intensive care.

There are currently 73 residents who have tested positive and are self-isolating in their homes, with the support of the Home Monitoring Centre.

The incidence rate in Monaco dropped to 452, compared to 536 previous week, but 20% of all PCR and antigen tests conducted in Monaco are still coming back positive.

In an effort to contain the circulation of Covid in Monaco, as well as all winter viruses like the flu and bronchiolitis, the government is now recommending people wear masks on public transport.

In the neighbouring Alpes Maritimes department, the incidence rate is high at 753, while 27% of all Covid tests are positive. ICU capacity in the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur is at 24%.


Photo by Monaco Life

CSM set to revolutionise treatment of childhood cancer

The results of a preclinical trial by the Centre Scientifique de Monaco could revolutionise the treatment of central nervous system tumours in children. Now the institution wants to take its research a step forwards with a clinical study, but hundreds of thousands of euros in funds are needed to make it happen.

2022 has been a promising year for the Centre Scientifique de Monaco (CSM) and its research into paediatric cancer, with a series of exciting announcements about its progress in the field as well as its international partnerships with leading institutions around the world.

Now it has released the findings of a preclinical trial into the use of the molecule axitinib in the treatment of medulloblastoma and ependymoma in young children. These rapidly growing tumours begin in the brain or spinal cord and affect the central nervous system. They typically affect children between the ages of five and nine, and although treatment is usually successful – the average five-year survival rate is 80% – it can also have significant, permanent consequences on the health of the child.

The “toxicity” of treatment and finding a safer alternative is something the CSM has been studying closely over the past seven years as part of a collaborative project with the Fondation Flavien, an association dedicated to supporting research in paediatric oncology. The goal has been to improve treatment by uncovering effective ways to target disease with the lowest possible side effects.

Axitinib, an orally-taken targeted therapy drug that acts as a cancer growth and angiogenesis inhibitor, is being put forwards by the CSM as a radical new tool in paediatric cancer care after its preclinical trial showed that when it was taken according to a metronomic regime – that is to say on a continuous or frequent schedule – it showed “comparable efficacy” at targeting cancerous cells as currently-used therapies, but it was also less damaging to healthy cells. The CSM hopes that the clinical use of axitinib will reduce the serious side effects young patients have to endure.

“Metronomic therapy helps manage cancer as a chronic disease,” explains Doctor Vincent Picco, head of the Brain Stem Cells and Tumours team at the CSM. “The objective is to control and slow down its growth to stop its development. This protocol could make it possible to limit the side effects by reducing the toxicity of the treatment [as] it is administered at lower doses, but more frequently.”

In a joint statement, the CSM and the Fondation Flavien say, “From now on, the only way to know if it is relevant to add axitinib to the therapeutic arsenal available to treat paediatric brain cancers is to conduct a clinical trial.”

The two institutions already have the support of Professor Nicolas André, a paediatric oncologist at La Timone Children’s Hospital in Marseille, as well as a group of French organisations dedicated to this field of work, such as CLIP², the Institut National du Cancer and the Ligue Contre le Cancer, but hundreds of thousands of euros in funding are still needed if their clinical trial on 36 patients over three years is to see the light of day.

“[The trial] will make it possible to determine the efficacy and the least toxicity of a metronomic administration of axitinib in combination with reduced doses of conventional chemotherapy,” says a spokesperson for the partnership.

“For the children and their families, this preclinical trial [offers] an immense hope,” adds Denis Maccario, the president of the Fondation Flavien. “The first phase of our collaboration with the CSM devoted to research required an investment of 600,000€, which was supported by donations. We are now embarking on the second phase… towards the implementation of a new treatment protocol.”

The cost of such a clinical trial is 620,000€. Already, 200,000€ has been raised by the Flavien Fondation, but a campaign is now underway in Monaco and France to achieve the final benchmark amount. Please click here for a link to the fundraising page.


Photo source: Centre Scientifique de Monaco