Speaking in an interview with Canal Plus, St Étienne manager Claude Puel announced the decision to remove 33-year-old goalkeeper Stéphane Ruffier from 1st team activities for the entirety of the 2020/21 campaign after he refused to play second fiddle to Jessy Moulin in the goalkeeping pecking order.
“I have informed the two players. The one (Jessy Moulin), that he was going to be starting the season, the other (Stéphane Ruffier) that he was going to be the second choice. And the second confirmed to me that he would never stand to be second fiddle to Jessy Moulin. That is why we have constructed a trio in which Stéphane is not included.”
That trio is Jessy Moulin (34), Stefan Bajic (18) and Etienne Green (20).
Ruffier had already been banned from the club’s training facilities last month, before the club decided ultimately not to fire him and instead withhold a part of his salary for 10 days as punishment for supposed misconduct.
The player’s agent refused to comment. Ruffier has played for Les Verts 383 times since arriving in 2011 from AS Monaco, playing the most matches for as a goalkeeper in the club’s illustrious history.