OGC Nice look to rediscover unity amid torrid run

With just one win in their last nine Ligue 1 games, OGC Nice have gone from one of the favourites for a UEFA Champions League qualification, to an outsider. With Le Gym’s hard work in the first half of the season at risk of going to waste, tensions sparked last week. 

Goalkeeper Marcin Bulka alluded to a crisis in the Nice dressing room when he passed through the mixed zone after last weekend’s 2-1 defeat to FC Nantes at the Allianz Riviera. “I don’t understand some attitudes in the team […] we’ll speak about it in the dressing room, not in front of the camera,” he said.

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“I don’t know if it is collective; I’d say it’s about individuals. Everyone needs to look themselves in the eyes and ask themselves if they are showing desire. Today, for me, some of them showed that they didn’t have that desire,” added the Polish international.

In the wake of those comments, there was a hint of criticism towards Bulka, coming from club captain Dante and also manager Francesco Farioli, but the call for unity was stronger. He is a player that really plays with emotion and energy. If he saw something that wasn’t right, maybe we all had to see it. We all understood. We are all closer than ever. Maybe he shouldn’t have done it publicly, but he is frank. We haven’t taken it badly,” said Dante at Friday’s press conference, attended by Get French Football News.

Todibo draws line under Bulka affair

“Emotions were running high. The only thing that I can reproach was the time and the place,” added Farioli. Whilst there wasn’t a victory against Stade de Reims, with both sides having to settle for a point (0-0), there was a notable reaction. “The match reflects a good week of work,” said Farioli. 

It was an opinion shared by Jean-Clair Todibo, who in his post-match interview with Prime Video Sport, sought to draw a line under the Bulka affair. “A group needs to stay united. Marcin and I spoke about it. It’s been sorted. He is a competitor, like everyone else. He was overcome with emotion. He made an ‘error’, if you can call it that, but we don’t hold it against him and we are all in this together,” said the France international. 

Nice will have to be united if they are to secure qualification for European competition with the race hotting up with just six games remaining. 

GFFN | Luke Entwistle

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