Final in Ligue 2, Greens worry ‘going to hell’ regardless of respite towards Laval

On the Geoffroy-Guichard Stadium (Saint-Etienne),

A really marked crime scene accompanied by an enigmatic ‘Who Killed ASSE? ‘, with three clearly recognized suspects: Roland Romeyer, Bernard Caïazzo and Jean-François Soucasse. Right here is the escape recreation provided by Saint-Etienne ultras on Tuesday night time close to the Geoffroy-Guichard stadium, earlier than the match towards Laval (fifteenth) virtually important to not sink into the Nationwide. Co-record holder of French league titles with PSG (10 from 1957 to 1981), AS Saint-Etienne is certainly within the worst place, regardless of a quick 1-0 success on the night, in a Ligue 2 purple mild place unworthy of its historical past.

Greater than 3 hours earlier than the beginning, Michel and Marie-Christine took their place with their grandson Loïs within the Inexperienced Museum, which has been visited by greater than 300,000 individuals because it opened in December 2013. in photographs of the 1976 European feat towards Dynamo Kyiv (3-0 AP). The rationale for his or her 600km motorhome journey from Vitré (Ile-et-Vilaine) is nearly as a lot an immersion within the legendary years of Robert Herbin’s workforce as it’s on day 18 of Ligue 2.

Driving in a motorhome from Brittany, Marie-Christine, Michel and Loïs have been capable of watch a recap of a few of ASSE’s greatest European Cup matches on the Greens museum. – Jeremy Laugier / 20 minutes

A scar from the gunfire towards AJ Auxerre

“I keep in mind all of the actions throughout these European Cup matches as if it have been yesterday,” notes Michel. It is unusual how low the membership has sunk in the present day. The purple lantern in Ligue 2 is now 4 factors behind the primary participant to not be relegated Rodez, the ASSE continues its unrelenting decline after relegation from Ligue 1, after an apocalyptic comeback assault towards AJ Auxerre punctuated by three withdrawals and 4 video games of loss closed doorways . A night that mentioned rather a lot about Saint-Etienne’s afflictions in 2022, on and off the pitch.

“We used tear gasoline all over the place, and within the face of cobblestones thrown in direction of the CRS, we needed to defend our heads with boards,” regrets Hervé Boulanger, 66, who has been promoting ASSE matches within the evenings for nearly 20 years. Stéphanois clear and difficult, this one was the goalkeeper of the Greens within the youth classes earlier than he labored at Manufrance … then to participate within the well-known closing of the 1976 European Champion Golf equipment’ Cup in Glasgow (0-1 towards Bayern Munich). The most effective mixture. “Earlier than I used to be 10 years outdated, my associates and I deliberate to go away Montreynaud to go and watch matches in Kocioł with out my mother and father understanding,” he laughs.

When a 7-year-old boy laughs at Monty’s phrases

Nostalgia appears to be all over the place in Forez as Hervé tries to recollect the chronology of the membership’s goalkeepers, between Curkovic and Castaneda, as a number of spectators begin buzzing tenderly Johnny Rep, the Mickey 3D tube and even on the cabinets of the Greens retailer, the place the emblematic former captain Loïc Perrin developed the quantity 24 T-shirt and cap assortment. He got here from Montbrison (Loire) along with his kids Nino (age 7) and Martina (age 4), Mathieu (39) selected inexperienced caps in his basket as an alternative. He’s virtually the primary shock to courageous the frost on Tuesday night time to spark an obscure match between fifteenth and twentieth in Ligue 2.

“I mentioned to myself that I’d not watch our video games anymore after we have been relegated in Might final 12 months,” confides the one who found Kocioł within the Nineties. However in the long run, the fervour stays regardless of all of the difficulties. It is fairly stunning, however there’s one thing instinctive about it. This factor prompted him to take his youngest son to Geoffroy-Guichard for the primary time on Tuesday, when he might need suspected that for the primary fairly pitiful time there wouldn’t be a single shot heading in the right direction.

Within the automobile, I had enjoyable making the children hearken to “Who’s the strongest? After all it is inexperienced” by Monty. Nicely, my 7-year-old boy made enjoyable of me for not falling for our stage. I dare not think about an unprecedented drop within the Nationwide. For the youthful generations, figuring out with the membership could be much more tough if we have been on the backside of the opening in the mean time. »

“We Have Inexperienced Blood”

Not removed from right here, however depressed by the present state of affairs within the ASSE, Humphrey (49) may be very proud to have his son Thomas (20) from Vierzon (Cher, 350 km) with him, as has been the case for greater than a decade. “Thomas fell very small within the Cauldron, and we’ll by no means change our colours: we’ve got inexperienced blood,” proclaims Humphrey. The overflowing ardour had already been thwarted because the Greens flirted with the Nationwide twice in 1997 and 1998 earlier than getting out on the latter day (each seventeenth in L2)…then returning to Ligue 1 the next season.

Another message addressed to co-presidents Bernard Caïazzo and Roland Romeyer was left near the south Cauldron dome on Tuesday.
One other message addressed to co-presidents Bernard Caïazzo and Roland Romeyer was left close to the south Cauldron dome on Tuesday. – Jeremy Laugier / 20 minutes

However the Cauldron was full on the time, as was October 1998 when it gathered 90,000 spectators for 3 consecutive matches (in L2 and a late Coupe de la Ligue). There have been solely 13,000 followers on Tuesday night time, specifically due to the boycott demanded by the principle teams (north and south kops) after the World Cup, which proceed to demand the departure of co-chairs Roland Romeyer and Bernard Caïazzo.

“We will unbelievable milestones and we’re dropping”

An atmospheric gloom that doesn’t intrude with fairly surreal scenes, together with this season the place solely 4 matches have been received out of 18 in L2. “On December 30, a younger girl got here specifically from Brest along with her boyfriend: she gave him the venue for the match towards Caen (1:1) and the Greens museum as a birthday current, says Laurent Chastellière, museum supervisor. These sorts of examples show how extraordinary the fervour for this membership stays. I do not neglect that 4 years in the past Lens languished in Ligue 2 and in 2017 we confronted Manchester United within the Europa League…”

The Purple Devils pennant is there to show it on the museum, however that journey with Zlatan Ibrahimović and his household now appears so distant. European Travels Eric Chouvier, 47, who assures that “his complete life revolves across the ASSE”, hasn’t missed a single one of many Galtier years. Whether or not at Outdated Trafford, but in addition in Azerbaijan, or in August 2013 towards FC Milsami in Orhei (Moldova), after… greater than 50 hours of bus journey!

Christophe Galtier discovered my journey so superb that from there he systematically pressured me to get on the workforce bus in order that I may attend ASSE coaching earlier than each European Cup recreation overseas, after which took me again to the resort, smiles the dwelling Spanish instructor in Puy-en-Velay (Higher Loire). These have been superb recollections. On the time, we by no means thought we would ever expertise such a disaster once more, however we went from disappointment to disappointment. Our descent into hell is horrible, we go up unbelievable levels and lose, kick, kick, whereas Christophe Galtier trains Messi. »

“The environment was a bit hostile”

An remark as icy as an save from Etienne Inexperienced or Matthieu Dreyer in entrance of their aim line this season. The latest pressing reinforcement of Gautier Larsonneur (ex-Brest and VA) on this place is among the excellent news of the night for Saint-Etienne’s aspect, as is the gorgeous return of Jean-Philippe Krasso (54), the decisive go for the sport’s solely aim on Tuesday Mathieu Cafaro (1-0, 59th). This success did little to ease the heavy air in Forez. “The local weather was a bit hostile and even when it wasn’t a decisive match, the victory did us good,” emphasizes Saint-Etienne captain Anthony Briançon. The worry of heights, nonetheless, is current amongst all followers this Wednesday morning.

“It’s not only one monument that’s in danger, however the entire metropolis,” explains Hervé Boulanger. Furthermore, after we see what’s going on within the city corridor, we inform ourselves that each one of Sainté is unquestionably in disaster in the mean time. Nonetheless, for at the very least one night on Tuesday’s return journey to Montbrison, Mathieu was capable of persuade his son that Monty’s phrases nonetheless matter in 2023.

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