With just 10 matches remaining until the end of the Ligue 1 season, clubs are already planning for next year’s campaign.
Lorient are almost certainly set for a summer change as their current manager Christian Gourcuff has rejected the latest offer that he received in terms of a contract extension from President Loic Fery, Football News understands. The latest offer was a 2 year extension, with wages and bonuses remaining more-or-less the same. It is unclear whether or not Lorient will submit a better financial offer for Christian Gourcuff’s services or whether they will begin to look elsewhere. As it stands, the father of Yoann Gourcuff, who has brought a unique counter-attacking style of play to Ligue 1 which has captivated audiences will be leaving the club in June after completing his 10th consecutive season as Lorient’s manager.
Herve Renard will be leaving Sochaux at the end of the season barring a dramatic u-turn in events after he declared last weekend as much. His initial deal lasted until June and it appears that he has no intention of extending his adventure with Sochaux who are likely to be relegated after 66 consecutive seasons in France’s top flight. Certain sections of the African press were linking the AFCON winner with the Moroccan national job last weekend.
Remi Garde has yet to sign a new contract with Lyon, furthering speculation that he may be seeking a change of scenery after a dramatic and strenuous last 12 months at the head of the coaching staff of Les Gones which is set to culminate in the departure of key players including Maxime Gonalons, Bafetimbi Gomis and possibly Clement Grenier. As things stand, Garde is free to leave the club in June.
Marseille interim manager Jose Anigo has announced this morning that President Vincent Labrune has completed a deal to bring in an unnamed manager at the end of the season. There is wild speculation regarding who that successor will be, with names such as the likes of Michael Laudrup and Andre Villas Boas being branded about. In reality, the next Marseille manager is set to be a Frenchman who has prior Ligue 1 experience. With so many managers yet to commit to their respective clubs, don’t rule any of the names mentioned in this article who manage clubs of a similar stature as Marseille at present to succeed Anigo in June.
Christophe Galtier is another manager who’s future as it stands is uncertain. His contract with St Étienne runs out at the end of the season and although he has indicated that he wishes to stay on with Les Verts, his success in the past two seasons will not have gone unnoticed by rival Ligue 1 clubs who are looking for a change of management.
Questions continue to arise about the competency of Bordeaux manager Francis Gillot and whether or not President Jean Louis Tiraud will fire him at the end of the season. Bordeaux have recently propelled themselves up the table but Gillot was clearly warned at the beginning of the season that European football is a target that must be met. His current deal runs until the end of next season.
Either way, multiple clubs will be looking to freshen up their managerial staff one way or another in France’s top flight come the end of the season. I suggest that we will indeed be in for marked changes to Ligue 1 football in 2014/2015. For better or for worse, we shall wait and see.