Week 25 reactions
PSG coach Laurent Blanc was full of praise for Marseille after his side won 2-1 at the Stade Vélodrome; opposite number Michel doubts anybody can beat the champions if OM cannot.
Sunday, February 7, 2016
Olympique de Marseille 1 - 2 Paris Saint-Germain
Michel (Marseille coach): "We are sad to lose, but I am satisfied with the level of my players. It is the same sensation as the reverse fixture (which PSG also won 2-1 in October). We maybe lack a bit of experience. I imagined a similar game like that, but not such a cruel result. We cannot concede the way we did, this is unacceptable. It is something that we will work on in training. The match was balanced, and even looked like it could go our way. If Paris did not lose tonight then they are going to prove extremely difficult to beat. Several teams have asked questions of them, but nobody has beaten them. (Lassana) Diarra has shown what kind of footballer he is, he has heart and is an indispensable player."
Laurent Blanc (PSG coach): "We got pushed around, especially in the second half I think. We're not accustomed to the opposing team playing so well but different opponents have different qualities. Physically and technically, Marseille were very good. My players showed solidarity to preserve the win, but now we have to string together these two games (against Lyon and Lille) before Chelsea in the Champions League. It will not be easy. We have to focus on one game at a time. Marseille were physically very robust but our technique was lacking and we gave away possession."
LOSC 1 - 1 Stade Rennais FC
Frédéric Antonetti (Lille coach): "I'm not angry, I have mixed feelings. We deserved the victory. We mastered this game, we were good going forward with pace. Apart from their penalty (scored in the 89th minute by Ousmane Dembélé) we were never in danger. It was a good game but we cannot control everything. It is cruel for the players, I'm disappointed for them. My message is simple: we must continue and be more lucid on our counter-attacks. It is a work in progress. We played well without being rewarded. We should have been able to score a second goal. It is points dropped but we are on the right track."
Rolland Courbis (Rennes coach): "The only positive today was our reaction in the second half. Walking out of a bad game it is difficult to digest. It was a difficult match to prepare for and the first half was difficult. The result is quite logical. After a good first half of Lille, we deserved to win the second. When they had Sofiane Boufal sent off it was easier for us. It is always better to be 11 against ten and it sure was a relief for us when he was no longer on the pitch."
Girondins de Bordeaux 1 - 4 AS Saint-Etienne
Willy Sagnol (Bordeaux coach): "It's tough but logical. We saw a very disciplined Saint-Etienne team and a very undisciplined Bordeaux. We failed to control the game. If you are in trouble at the back the cost is always expensive. However, it was not just the defence. The whole team got beaten. We had a big slump in November, I hope we will not relive the same scenario. Over the last five matches we have conceded a lot of goals. I want to look ahead now to the Nantes match (in the Coupe de France Round of 16 on Wednesday). Maybe a will bring in some fresh blood to add to the competition for places."
Christophe Galtier (coach Saint-Etienne coach): "This is an important victory. We were dealing with a Bordeaux team that I had observed in Lyon, a lively opponent. I'm not talking about an opponent that I find have enormous quality, but my players had to remain focused. The players exploited gaps. The team were good in the first half-hour. We could have taken the lead earlier but the Bordeaux goalkeeper (Paul Bernardoni) made a crucial stop. I really thought at that moment that this was going to be a difficult game."
Saturday, February 6, 2016
AS Monaco 1 - 0 OGC Nice
Leonardo Jardim (Monaco coach): "First I want to pay tribute to Mr (Maurice) Revello (the creator of the Toulon Tournament, who recently passed away aged 82). French football has lost somebody important. As for the game, I loved it. We played well 11 against 11 and even ten against 11 (after Nabil Dirar's red card on 48 minutes). When Fabio Coentrao got injured we lost some width on the left but we had to find a solution. That's my role, but the victory is 100 percent that of the players. They are responsible. And not for the first time, they demonstrated that apart from PSG, there is no better team than us."
Claude Puel (Nice coach): "It is very unfortunate compared to what was expected. I felt we were closer to winning than losing for large parts of the game. It was a good match. Paradoxically, the red card served them well. They are good at defending when they are a man down. We lost three points tonight. It's hard to accept, but that's football. I regret that we did not take advantage of our numerical superiority. We lacked attacking verve. If Monaco keep playing like this they could even catch Paris!"
Angers SCO 0 - 3 Olympique Lyonnais
Stéphane Moulin (Angers coach): "I don't have much to say because there was no match. There was a match for ten minutes and then Lyon got their goal, a wonderful goal. Otherwise the game was over. I do not dispute the red card (Thomas Mangani was sent off after 16 minutes). There was no intention to hurt from Mangani, but his challenge was late. Lyon were already playing better than us with 11 against 11. I want to congratulate my team that they did not lose by more. We will find solutions and be prepared for the next game."
Bruno Génésio (Lyon coach): "It is satisfying to have won, to have claimed a second consecutive victory. It is certainly true that after the red card we enjoyed numerical superiority, but this does not always guarantee victory. What is important is that the team found confidence collectively and individually. We must remain humble, down to Earth. I'm not sure if we played better tonight than against Saint-Étienne or Marseille, we just took our first chance and that changed the game."
SM Caen 0 - 2 Stade de Reims
Patrice Garande (Caen coach): "At half-time I was angry because I do not understand how anyone can start a game like that, having so many gaps in every area and so little determination. Reims bettered us everywhere, we must congratulate them. We talk about Europe and then we see it might be beyond us. The least we can ask for is that the players run. We cannot blame fatigue - only four players played in our three games this week! They were far too passive. This is a very big disappointment. I am disappointed with the result and with the players' behaviour."
Olivier Guégan (Reims coach): "We played a very consistent match, with lots of technical quality despite a difficult surface. We did not concede for a long time and we did some interesting things going forward. We could have won by more if we had been more accurate in front of goal, which would not have been undeserved. If we maintain this level of play then of course we will collect points."
GFC Ajaccio 0 - 0 EA Guingamp
Thierry Laurey (GFC Ajaccio coach): "My players are not too relaxed, no. At this moment things are a bit difficult. We need to work together to find our desire. The players do not doubt themselves. We need to review things that are reminiscent of the early part of the season (GFC Ajaccio won their first match in Week 11). We have progressed since then, and we need to recover a mind-set that will help us finish higher up the table. We knew a dip in form was possible, but given the players' mentality we have an opportunity to rebuild."
Jocelyn Gourvennec (Guingamp coach): "This is a result that, of course, pleased me. We played with ten men for almost the entire game (after Lionel Mathis' 6th-minute red card). Apart from PSG, I do not see any team capable of winning when a man down. We were very rigorous and organised and this hampered GFC Ajaccio, who created virtually no chances. However, it was a good draw, especially since I had started with the same 11 as in the two previous games. This was our third match in eight days. We brought back a point. This is a good thing."
FC Lorient 1 - 1 Montpellier Hérault SC
Sylvain Ripoll (Lorient coach): "We will take the point given the circumstances. What is significant is the state of mind of the players. They refused to let their heads go down. We were able to take control of the game even when we went down to ten men (Francois Bellugou was sent off on 38 minutes). Having Walid (Mesloub) back was excellent. He has this ability to keep possession and in these circumstances he is a very interesting player. With the synthetic pitch, in these conditions, with the wind, the rain, it was very complicated."
Frédéric Hantz (Montpellier coach): "By taking four points from three matches, with two away games, I prefer to see the glass as half-full tonight. The week was full of lessons, there are guidelines that emerge. Given the circumstances Lorient started very well. However, we managed to score. I regret that they got back into the match. We lost our concentration. We had chances to win this game after Lorient equalised. We had 11 shots on goal, we could have won, but it is a good point taken."
SC Bastia 2 - 0 ESTAC Troyes
François Ciccolini (Bastia coach): "All week we studied our main opponent - us. We did not take that into account and we paid with the red card of (Jean-Louis) Leca. It is human, but when we do not respect the rules you get punished. We have a small cushion on the relegation zone, taking six points from three matches. Our first twenty minutes were very good, then we stopped playing, we started to walk. We were poorly positioned, particularly up front. The fact we did not respect Troyes was disappointing. We need to be more respectful of our opponents. We spent a lot of energy against Lyon last Saturday (a 1-0 win for Bastia). We will give our players a rest tomorrow."
Mohamed Bradja (Troyes co-coach): "It was a complicated evening for us because we went missing in the first half. We played well after. We can congratulate the boys. I hope they play like that until the end of the season. Losing (Brayan) Perea and (Fabien) Camus (both were sent off) for the Coupe de France against Saint-Etienne is harmful. This hurts. I take the situation one game at a time."
Toulouse FC 0 - 0 FC Nantes
Dominique Arribagé (Toulouse coach): "We should have had more energy and been able to upset them further. The accumulation of matches since early January weighs us down a little. When the team is 19th and the fans are calling for a resignation, it is not unexpected. I remain combative, and I will look for inspiration to help the team to get out of trouble. I'll stay very combative and transmit that to my players because I know we have a big month in February because we will play against direct competitors and I am confident that with more energy we can beat these teams and prove that we deserve to stay in Ligue 1."
Michel Der Zakarian (Nantes coach): "Of course we would have preferred to win 1-0. We were too timid in the first half. Our second half was better. Unfortunately we had three chances that we failed to convert. That is disappointing. However, we remain unbeaten in 11 matches. Of course we would have preferred to have two more points, but we'll settle for that and we will have to pull together next Saturday against Lorient."
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