Ligue 1: Nantes, future opponent of the MHSC, under the control of Kombouaré


The technician brings life back to Nantes, host of the MHSC on Sunday (3 p.m.), for the 27th day of Ligue 1.

The tide was yellow. A popular wave swept over the lawn of the Beaujoire stadium in a crazy fellowship Wednesday at the end of the penalty shootout in the semi-final of the Coupe de France against Monaco (2-2, 4-2 on pens).

She swept away years of wandering, hostilities between supporters and the Kita family, and chewed up roots to celebrate in a patched up union a first Coupe de France final since 2000.

Nantes becomes a little Nantes again. He clings to his prestigious past (8 titles) around a figure of the yellow house: Antoine Kombouare.

With the Cup final, probably May 7 at the Stade de France against Nice, a 7th place in Ligue 1 amplified by a recent success in front of PSG (3-1), the former Nantes defender (1983-90) restores a crushed image in the absence of a game identity.

« A lot of images come to mind: enormous satisfaction, pride and things that are a bit beyond comprehension. I saw people invade the stadium, it’s a pretty rare moment. It’s very beautiful what we live »he welcomed Wednesday after the qualification.

Unifying spokesperson and guide of « morbaques »

Kombouaré promises to extend the party on Sunday against Montpellier, during the 27th day of Ligue 1. « To win this final, you have to make good matches in the league. And therefore beat Montpellier« he slips.

Backed by its historical legitimacy, Kombouaré is the strong man of Nantes. The Kanak, with its volcanic character and often sharp speech, soothes the local climate. While President Waldemar Kita and his son Franck, managing director, have almost taken refuge in silence, he behaves like a unifying spokesperson.

The coach mainly coaches. He is even a driving coach at the head of a group unchanged since last season. «  These players are seriously sick. Last year they got really scared (maintain in L1)so now you have morbaques, they always want more, we just have to channel « he says.

Kombouaré patched up a cracked soul by succeeding Raymond Domenech in February 2021, who had succeeded Christian Gourcuff during the truce. Following a play-off in front of Toulouse, he spared Nantes a third relegation since dawn of a dark century.

If his friend Michel Der Zakariananother tough guy, had twice brought Nantes back to Ligue 1 (2007-08, then 2011-16), the Kanak brings him closer to heights lost to sight since 2001 and the passage of Raynald Denoueix. The legend awaits him if he wins a 4th Coupe de France. And maybe a yellow tide in the streets of Nantes.

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