‘A catastrophe’ and ‘a purge’ – Rennes reflect on ‘inconceivable and shameful’ loss to Toulouse

After RC Lens’ loss at the hands of FC Metz and Stade de Reims’ loss at the hands of RC Strasbourg Alsace, Stade Rennais hosted Toulouse FC at the Roazhon Park on Saturday night with the chance to make significant progress in their hunt for European football next season. 

Rennes began brightly, taking the lead through Désiré Doué midway through the second half but Toulouse struck back immediately through Cristian Cásseres before Moussa Diarra gave Le TéFéCé the lead just minutes later. After a dramatic first 30 minutes at the Roazhon Park, the game settled down. No further goals were scored and Rennes succumbed to a 2-1 defeat. Les Rennais have now lost their last four in all competitions, whilst they have just one win in their last seven in Ligue 1; that is not the form of a European contender and all levels of the club voiced their frustration with their current run post-match. 

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“It was a catastrophe, what we showed in terms of desire and in the game from start to finish. We can only do one thing and that’s apologise, apologise to our supporters who didn’t desert us from start to finish. We haven’t deserved them in recent matches. Tonight, it was a purge. We need to go home and question ourselves, that’s it,” said defender Arthur Theate in the post-match mixed zone. 

Rennes president laments “inconceivable and shameful’ behaviour

In a post-match press conference, attended by Get French Football News, Julien Stéphan said, “We can lose but we can’t accept losing like that […] the second half was nearly complete nothingness. We’ll need to find explanations. It’s out of the question to reproduce this kind of match,” said Stéphan, who recently signed a renewal with Rennes, tying him to the club for two further seasons. 

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“We have given an unworthy representation of Stade Rennais with an insipid second-half display,” said club president Olivier Cloarec. “It’s true that with what we showed, we didn’t deserve better than a loss tonight. We are on a four-game losing run, with just one goal scored. What we are showing clearly contrasts with what we were showing several weeks ago […] we are speechless faced with the team’s behaviour. It’s inconceivable and shameful. We’ll review at the end of the season and we will take responsibility, don’t worry,” he added.

With the Rennes fans also displaying their discontent pre-match, unfurling a banner that read: “Six matches to qualify. Europe isn’t an option but an obligation”, there is a malaise that has clearly infiltrated every level of the club. 

GFFN | Luke Entwistle

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