November 27, 2021

“Toulouse seems to be heading straight for Ligue 1”

Before Auxerre’s reception at the Stadium this Saturday (3 p.m., beIN Sports 2), the writing of the site LesViolets.Com questioned Yoyo, an active auxerrois supporter on Twitter.

The AJA seems better equipped than last season to play the podium, in particular thanks to a better defensive footing. Do you share this impression?
Personally, I consider that we are better armed than last year above all because we have succeeded in replacing Mickaël Le Bihan by better with Gaëtan Charbonnier, who is for me the best striker in Ligue 2 (it can be played out) be with Moussa Koné when he does not do what he wants), and Gaëtan Perrin who comes to put competition on the wings. Offensively, we recruited a killer in front and he will help us. Le Bihan admittedly finished in the top scorers in Ligue 2 last year but this is above all due to 3 months of very high level between mid-September and mid-December 2020 (13 goals in 11 games), the rest n isn’t that huge. Defensively, we made a good pick with Théo Pellenard who replaces Gautier Lloris, injured since the start of the season, but we still feel that it is fragile at times, especially when the opponent is building up speed. Donovan Léon is also having a better start to the season than last year so that helps too. Afterwards, the weak point is perhaps the depth of the bench even if we have a few young people that we would like to see from time to time.

You have a lot of absentees for this game. What will the team look like?
In the cage, it will be Donovan Leon. In defense, on the right, probably Georgen who will be preferred to Arcus, Jubal-Pellenard in the axis and Bernard on the left. In peak, Charbonnier. In the middle, to see if it will be a 4-1-4-1 or a 4-2-3-1. I rather imagine a 4-2-3-1 without Sakhi, in order to have a well-balanced team. We would therefore have to recover Touré associated with Mohamed (first appearance in L2) then a trio Hein – Autret – Perrin or Dugimont. Note that on the bench, we will have several young people: Laiton (2002), Ben Fredj (2000), Mohamed (2001), Mercier (2003). Oumar Camara (2001) and Danois (2004) will make their first professional group.

Despite his record in Ligue 2, a small doubt surrounds Jean-Marc Furlan among the supporters of Auxerre. Why ?
The project led by James Zhou, our majority shareholder and new president since last May, is to reconcile training and stability in Ligue 1. In any case, we will not hold up ad vitam aeternam with such a large budget in Ligue 2. The rise in Ligue 1 could thus make it possible to promote the club for a possible resale so that James Zhou does not lose too much in his investment in Auxerre.
For training, Jean-Marc Furlan is really struggling to launch young people unless he is forced to (like this weekend). Yanis Begraoui therefore finds himself free in Toulouse after a starving playing time at home, Ousoumane Camara, injured since the start of the season, never played last season, Lassine Sinayoko was launched by force of circumstances after having tested Gaëtan Perrin at the forefront… We could also speak of Kenji-Van Boto who ends up on loan at Pau where he shows that he has the L2 level after 2 years of bench with us under Furlan, and who clearly says that Furlan’s speech does not didn’t make you want to stay (rightly so given his past playing time). It is difficult to see how the training center will be profitable given the confidence placed in the young people and yet it is one of the objectives of the club.
For stability in Ligue 1, it requires a comeback and in this game, Jean-Marc Furlan is a specialist. In spite of everything, to go back, he calls on many experienced players of L2 who do not have the level especially for above. We have already seen it in Troyes, it makes the yo-yo then. We therefore agree that his method could make us review Ligue 1 but we are very afraid behind going back down directly (especially if we go up this year with the 4 downhills next year) and therefore fail in the project. We will have to be damn efficient at the transfer window if we ever go up.

Hamza Sakhi, who hoped to join TFC this summer and was also announced in Turkey, has finally stayed with you. How do you feel at the start of the season?

He’s a bit of a tone below last year. His initial inclinations undoubtedly affected him. Despite everything, he remains a dangerous player in Ligue 2 who has the technical quality to do great things. Our 4-1-4-1 is working pretty well and it’s helping it. He was injured during the international break and will be absent for several weeks.

This is the tenth consecutive season for AJA in Ligue 2. Are the supporters still responding?
We can see it on the various social networks, AJ Auxerre still has fans and is still a reputable Ligue 2 club. In terms of spectators at the stadium, you should know that Auxerre is a small town of 35,000 inhabitants, in the middle of the campaign, so it doesn’t help to attract people to the stadium. We have a community that is quite scattered all over France. Despite everything, we have exceeded 7,000 spectators since September. The start of the season also helps. It remains weaker than clubs in the region like Dijon or Sochaux but given the geographical location of Auxerre, it’s already good. The yards are often not too badly filled so it shows that there is enthusiasm behind the club.

A prediction for this Saturday’s match? And for the final ranking of the two clubs?
Even if Rouault, Dejaegere and Spierings are missing on the Toulouse side, a draw at the Stadium would undoubtedly be a good result for AJ Auxerre. I still use the conditional because if we end up with 2 goals in advance like last year or like 2 weeks ago against Nîmes, we will not have the right to give up points… I hope so a 1-1 would not be bad. For the final classification, ideally, we do 1st and 2nd together. Toulouse seems to be heading straight for Ligue 1. On our side, we have tough competitors that we will have to get rid of so nothing is won.