Antonine Kombouaré

Antonine Kombouaré's History of Success in French Football

Antonine Kombouaré's History of Success in French Football

Publish on 03/21 at 16:00 - E. RAZO


Antoine Kombouaré is back with FC Nantes after the club appointed the veteran tactician this week. The 60-year-old will add another chapter to his long and illustrious career as a player and coach in French football.

Kombouaré began his playing career in 1983 with Nantes, making 202 appearances for Les Canaris. After eight years, Kombouaré departed Nantes for Paris Saint-Germain, winning several trophies during his six years in the French capital.

The center-back won one Ligue 1 title, two Coupe de France trophies, and a Coupe de la Ligue trophy. Most importantly, though, playing in Paris laid the foundation for his coaching career as Kombouaré told Onze Mondial in 2022.


"I started pursuing my coaching licenses at the age of 25. I wanted, after my playing career, to work with young players and be involved in coaching. In fact, that's what I did. I was fortunate that PSG asked me to join their youth academy. The offer came from the president, Alain Cayzac at the time."

"I spent four years there. I really enjoyed that period. It allowed me to learn my trade, to mentor young players, and to work on their development. I've always had a passion for coaching. I enjoy nurturing young talent and working with them. I like the idea of helping them progress."

After coaching PSG's B team for five years, he transitioned to becoming RC Strasbourg's manager. With a move to Valenciennes in 2005, Kombouaré began to lift trophies as a coach. 

In his first season with the northern side, he helped the club earn promotion by winning Ligue 2.

Kombouaré spent four years with Valenciennes, but in 2009, he was named PSG manager, subsequently winning the Coupe de France in his first season. He spent three years managing the capital club before then taking the reins at RC Lens, Guingamp, and Toulouse.

In 2021, Kombouaré managed another of his former clubs from his playing career, Nantes. The 60-year-old led Nantes to the 2022 Coupe de France final, where they defeated OGC Nice. During an interview with the Ligue 1 Show on beIN SPORTS, Kombouaré noted what it meant to win the Coupe de France for Nantes.

"It made me proud to see the Stade de France three quarters full of Nantes fans. There were 60,000 of them! Above all, you're happy because you can see people who are proud to be FC Nantes fans, and nothing can beat that feeling."

"It made me realize how privileged I am to be able to experience that. To win a trophy with my first club, but above all to make people happy. We have a team that can stir emotions and, above all, make people happy. It's unique."

Kombouaré took Nantes to a second consecutive final last season, with a chance to win back-to-back Coupe de France titles, but they fell to Toulouse. Now that he's back with Nantes for a second stint, his task to keep them in Ligue 1. Les Canaris currently occupy the playoff relegation position, above FC Metz by two points. 

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