Thursday night August 26, it’s from Lille that Jocelyn Gourvennec, new LOSC coach since July, adopted the draw for the Champions League. Removed from Istanbul, the place the ceremony was happening, the 49-year-old coach noticed his membership win the bowls, with a spot in Group G alongside Sevilla FC, FC Salzburg and Wolfsburg.
“A homogeneous group”, as described by Olivier Létang, the president of the membership, who maintains for Lille the hope of a qualification within the knockout levels of the C1. However nothing to brag about for Gourvennec, reached by cellphone, who prefers to give attention to different deadlines earlier than the European video games: “The Champions League is an occasion. However I do not need to disperse myself, first there’s Ligue 1, which is essential. We should not get the unsuitable goal! “
Earlier than serious about Europe, the reigning French champion should certainly get again to the place within the league. In the course of the first three days, the Mastiffs didn’t win a single encounter (two attracts in opposition to Brest and Saint-Etienne, a defeat in opposition to Good). The arrival of Montpellier on the Pierre-Mauroy stadium, Sunday, August 29, is a chance for the northern membership to reverse the development.
As a result of till then, LOSC has supplied performances effectively under the expectations of its supporters and has simply achieved the worst begin to the season for a French champion since… Montpellier, in the course of the 2012-2013 season. The time when the supporters celebrated the title within the streets of Lille, on Might 24, is much away. LOSC appears caught within the 2020-2021 season, unable to delve into the subsequent one.
“It went unsuitable”
“The transition between the 2 seasons is tough, concedes Jocelyn Gourvennec. However that is just about on a regular basis when a group that is not deliberate to be champion does. Groups used to profitable dwell much less that. ” The return to competitors was all of the harder as LOSC misplaced three necessary gamers: Mike Maignan, Boubakary Soumaré and Luiz Araujo.
Above all, the northern membership needed to resign itself to seeing Christophe Galtier, the one who led Lille to the highest of Ligue 1. Now coach of OGC Good, Galtier made a convincing return to the Pierre-Mauroy stadium on August 14, crushing his former group (4-0). A slap within the face for the French champion, who illustrates his difficulties initially of the season. “However this sport was irrational. There have been quite a lot of feelings and it went unsuitable ”, underlines Gourvennec.
These first three video games for Lille within the league are shocking, particularly after the Dogues victory in opposition to Paris-Saint-Germain within the Champions Trophy, the 1er August (1-0). For the primary time in eight years, PSG didn’t win this competitors, and LOSC appeared prepared to harass the capital membership for an additional season.
The machine has since stalled. “The mobilization was very robust on this last, with a trophy to be gained on the finish, explains Gourvennec. However getting again into the championship is harder for the gamers as a result of they know it is a very robust, very lengthy competitors. It isn’t simple to seek out the suitable habits. “
So as to not disrupt a gaggle essentially marked by an surprising league title, the brand new LOSC coach has minimized the adjustments within the group: identical system in 4-4-2 as underneath Christophe Galtier, identical base males, identical philosophy The one factor that adjustments is the message despatched by the coach because the begin of the preparation, summed up by the captain, José Fonte, after the rout in opposition to Good: “Final season is over. Now we have to write down a brand new story. “
Rebound anticipated in opposition to Montpellier
For the second, the mayonnaise just isn’t taking and, inevitably, Jocelyn Gourvennec is on the middle of the discussions. The previous coach of Bordeaux and Guingamp, who had not held positions for greater than two years, has by no means needed to handle such a workforce. “I used to be judged earlier than I even began, so I do not fear an excessive amount of about that. I work onerous however we can’t decide the contribution of a coach over a month and a half “, defends the technician from Lille.
To realize unanimity, Gourvennec should unlock his victory counter together with his new membership. This Sunday, in opposition to Montpellier, LOSC has no alternative however to win, underneath penalty of spending your complete worldwide break asking questions. The Lille coach can also be ready “The top of the switch window, which can be necessary in order that the concepts are clear for everybody”.
With two factors taken out of 9 attainable in three video games, the urgency is already there for the champion of France. And this, even when AS Monaco and Olympique Lyonnais, two rivals for the highest of the desk, additionally missed their begin. With the reception of Montpellier, Lille hopes to get again on monitor. “There was a transparent enchancment in opposition to Saint-Etienne [lors de troisième journée], so I anticipate continuity. We fell behind and we’ve got to carry out rapidly ”, concludes Gourvennec.