Have you taken it easy on your international players due to the upcoming match against Nantes this Sunday?
They had light trainings since they came back. The management of international players is a domain that I know well. There’s the pleasure of playing for one’s country and the fatigue and that lack of sleep that goes with it. In this type of situation, we have to adapt the program.
Is Paul-Georges Ntep back at his peak level of physical performance?
He’s doing better. I saw him sprint without difficulty and I’m happy with his work. He has confidence in himself again. He’ll have difficulty playing an entire match due to fatigue but he’s feeling reassured now, before he was doubting himself a little bit.
What is your opinion on the match against Nantes?
Until the end of the season, we’ll try our best every weekend. There’s still 8 matches to be played and we’re going to play hard in order to win them all because we only have one more match to attain our goal. We’ll play against Nantes like we’ll play against Paris: we’ll play to win! We just have to adapt our style of playing. Nantes has one of the best defensive lines of the championship, they have 5 more points than us and as a result they’re closer to the Europa League spots but nothing is certain at the moment.
The match between Nantes and ASSE will also be a duel between two seasoned coaches. What does Claudio Ranieri’s work make you think of?
His career speaks for him! What’s impressive about him is the challenges that he has overcome. He was Monaco’s trainer when they were in 2nd division and he rallied the team and to go to Leicester and finish as Premier League champions, he’s a great coach. Today, he’s not far from wining his bet and bringing Nantes back to the European level. There are good coaches in this championship and he’s one of them. You only have to look at his record and you understand.
Have your experiences with AS Saint-Etienne strengthened your passion for Football?
I never lost my passion for Football. At one point, I lost sight of Football for family reasons but what helped me was my passion for Football. To have a lot of work whether it be with Montpellier or Sainté this year was a good thing for me. I’m very happy today in Saint-Etienne, first of all because I was welcomed very well, because I have a good team and also I’m not far from my family.