The Toulouse residents did not manage to display the same face as against Reims against the sad Nantais, very happy to leave with three points (2-1). Worrying signals before the trip to Lisbon on Thursday in the Europa League.
It is customary to say that a picture is worth a thousand words. The image of Carles Martinez Novell, relegated to the stands yesterday afternoon (read elsewhere), was no exception to the rule. At that point, there were only a handful of minutes left to play and the outcome of the match was already no longer in doubt (2-1). Sitting on a plastic chair alongside the club’s video analysts, the Toulouse coach seemed disappointed. Slouching on his back, staring into space, as if he didn’t understand how his players had managed to complicate their task in this way.
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And for good reason, the Violets seemed without a solution to get around the very low block of Canaris who had not come to the Stadium to play football, but rather to go camping in their last 30 meters. Faced with a direct competitor for maintenance, the TFC nevertheless had the opportunity to gain some air in the ranking and achieve a second consecutive victory after last week’s success in Reims (3-2).
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But it has not happened. Instead, Christian Mawissa, visibly not concentrated at the time of kick-off, offered, in the 20th second, a dangerous free kick to Nantes who were not asking for so much. Add to that a wall that is not necessarily well placed and a shooter of the level of Mostafa Mohamed: you will get the opening score for the visitors from the first minute of play.
“I think we made a mistake in the first duel and it is avoidable,” conceded Pol Garcia, assistant coach who replaced Martinez on the Toulouse bench. He continues: “But there are mistakes in every match. Behind it we have to react to repair it and we have not succeeded. »
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75% possession and the seat of Alban Lafont’s goal
The Canaries could then put on their slippers and repel the purple assaults without taking the slightest risk. What followed was a siege on Alban Lafont’s goal, widely ridiculed by a resentful Stadium. But neither Dallinga (5), nor Sierro (9), nor Gboho (39), nor the breakthroughs and crosses from the restless Babicka (5, 15) allowed the Violets to come back to the score despite unchallenged domination.
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In the stands, shortly before half-time, Carles Martinez seethes and clutches his head with both hands. The data indicates 75% possession for his team. And despite 16 shots or 12 corners, his men cannot do it. Worse, from the start of the second half, the disaster scenario occurred when, on a counter, Mohamed perfectly served Kadewere who crucified a helpless Guillaume Restes (2-0, 51st).
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Very patient supporters
Dallinga’s goal at the very end of the match changed nothing (2-1, 90+6). Toulouse are unable to string together two consecutive victories this season and have not won at the Stadium in Ligue 1 since October 1. Fortunately, the good run in the Europa League allows the TFC to maintain a good popularity rating with its supporters who demonstrate a patience that is surprising to say the least. In fact, very few whistles were heard at the end of the match.
It is perhaps because there will be more than 3,000 of them participating on Thursday in a historic trip for the European Cup play-off at Benfica Lisbon. “The Europa League gave us a lot of joy and satisfaction so we are looking forward to playing it again, the same goes for the supporters,” Vincent Sierro projected, as if to quickly forget the poor performance of his team.
Moreover, if it can reassure them, four days before welcoming Liverpool and achieving the feat of the decade, the Toulouse residents had already lost at home. It was against Le Havre, a humiliating 2-1 defeat that no one has forgotten. Four days later, Toulouse enjoyed an unforgettable evening against the Reds. From there to imagine doing it again in Lisbon, no one will dare say it.