Twenty-two years after their last title, FC Nantes won the Coupe de France against Nice (0-1), this Saturday, in the final. Sharper and more solid, the Canaries get a direct ticket to the next Europa League.
FC Nantes wins the Coupe de France! Close to relegation, a year earlier, the Canaries confirmed their fine 2021-2022 season by lifting their 4th title in the event, after 1979, 1999 and 2000, following their victory over Nice (0-1), this Saturday , in the final at the Stade de France.
A deserved consecration for Antoine Kombouar’s men, more incisive and united for 90 minutes, who will compete in the group stage of the Europa League in the next exercise.
A tight first act
In a superb atmosphere at the Stade de France, Nice started better. Efficient in pressing, the Aiglons were not far from opening the scoring but Gouiri lacked control before adjusting Lafont. An alert that woke up the FCN. Pushed by a very noisy public, the Canaries chained the sequences of possession and pushed back their opponents. Blas, who was between the lines, even forced Bulka to make an important save on his low shot.
After a quarter of an hour of hesitation, the Gym regained its senses and resumed its march forward. A rise in power which was almost rewarded with a strike from Gouiri which flirted with the post. Failing to show a good technical level, the players in the game put on the intensity and did not hesitate to engage without however managing to create clear chances. A balanced and disputed finish that was hard to settle.
Blas without pity, the defense of Nantes holds firm
When they returned from the locker room, Nantes immediately made the difference. Following a hand from Boudaoui in the area, Blas did not need to be asked to transform his penalty into force (0-1, 47th). Forced to react, the Niois passed the second but exposed themselves to sharp counterattacks from their opponents. On one of them, Simon passed close to the break but the Riviera defense held firm to avoid sinking permanently.
Under the chants of the supporters of both camps, Lafont and Girotto pulled out all the stops by deflecting two shots in quick succession from Gouiri and Delort. In the last quarter of an hour, OGCN continued to push but Nantes did not let go and could count on an iron defense to maintain their lead until the end. A deserved victory for the Antoine Kombouar band, which allows the Canaries to lift a fourth Coupe de France in their history.
The score of the match: 6/10
A fine final, at least in the stands, where the supporters of both teams put on a show. On the field, we were treated to an intense and disputed match for lack of having had a great show on the technical level. However, we were not bored in this part which finally tipped in favor of the team that wanted it the most.
The goal :
– On receiving a cross on the left side, Merlin crosses but the ball touches Boudaoui’s hand. Penalty for Nantes, which Blas transforms by shooting in force halfway up, slightly to the left (0-1, 47th).
Maxifoot has assigned a score (out of 10) comments on each player.
Man of the match: Nicolas Pallois (8/10)
A very big match for the central defender, who only made a mouthful of Dolberg in the first period with muscular but very clean interventions. Intimidating, he repelled all Niois attacks in his area by capsizing Nantes supporters. Definitely the big man of the game for Nantes!
Marcin Bulka (5): the Polish goalkeeper finally had little to do in this match. Apart from a save on a soft strike from Blas in the first period, he was little involved. The goalkeeper loaned by PSG can do absolutely nothing on the penalty in force from the Nantes attacking midfielder.
Jordan Lotomba (4.5): an average match for the Swiss right side. He allowed himself a few climbs but only too rarely sought to combine with Boudaoui. Above all, he left too many spaces behind his back, Simon.
Jean-Clair Todibo (4): a difficult evening for the central defender trained in Toulouse. Warned before the break for a rough foul on Kolo Muani, he had problems with Simon’s liveliness. Too nervous, he lost his means over the minutes, the image of this altercation with Moutoussamy at the end of the match.
Dante (6): the Niois captain did not have much to reproach himself for in this match. He won several heated duels against the Nantes attackers. We could blame him for a lack of grinta when the Gym was down.
Melvin Bard (5.5): the left side trained in Lyon has shown character. Defensively, he withstood the shock against the excesses of the Nantes attackers by playing hard. On the other hand, he was once again too imprecise on his centers, which were often ill-adjusted. Replaced the 86th minute with Samuel Moutoussamy (not not).
Hichem Boudaoui (5): an unfortunate evening for the Algerian midfielder. At fault on the penalty with an inevitable hand in the area, he was nevertheless one of the most restless Aiglons in his right lane. Unfortunately for him, he was not supported enough by Lotomba. Replaced the 57th minute with Justin Kluivert (not noted).
Pablo Paulino Rosario (4): the Dutch midfielder missed his match. Usually tough in duels, the former PSV player never managed to worry his Nantes counterparts, spending a lot of time chasing the ball. Replaced the 63rd minute with Mario Lemina (not noted).
Khphren Thuram-Ulien (5.5): in an axial position, while he has often been used on a wing in recent weeks, Lilian’s son has been interesting in recovery. Nonetheless, he showed much less drive attacking apart from a breakthrough early in the second half.
Amine Gouiri (5.5): rather stirring, the Niois striker, aligned on the left wing, got his team’s best opportunity in the first period. Before that, he was clumsy by missing an easy control in the box. After the break, he again gives Lafont sweats, first on a shot deflected by Coco, then on another deflected by the Nantes goalkeeper.
Kasper Dolberg (3): a very difficult evening for the Danish striker. Despite what was at stake, the Nordic striker proved to be much too soft by being eaten in the duels by Pallois. He unfortunately honored his first name in this meeting… Replaced in the 63rd minute by Billal Brahimi (not rated).
Andy Delort (5.5): the Algerian striker gave everything in this final but he fell on a rock in the person of Pallois. He was close to equalizing with a shot from close range, but the other wall of the Nantes defence, Girotto, was there to prevent him from saving his team.
Alban Lafont (6): like Bulka, the Nantes goalkeeper did not have much to do. But he was able to be decisive by pulling off this fine save in front of Gouiri before seeing Girotto save the day in the crowd on a shot from Delort.
Jean-Charles Castelletto (5.5): the Cameroonian central defender had difficulties against Delort. He missed certain reminders and interventions in the first period before tightening the screw after the break despite the pressure.
Andrei Girotto (7): good match for the Brazilian. Clean in his raises, he contained Dolberg well. Above all, the usual midfielder made an incredible save in front of his line on Delort’s point-blank shot to prevent Nice from equalizing.
Nicolas Pallois (8): read comment above.
Marcus Coco (6): placed in the role of right piston, the former player of Guingamp has worked rather well to prevent the rises of Bard. Even if he brought little forward, he respected his role until his exit. Replaced the 83rd minute with Fabio (not not).
Samuel Moutoussamy (6): the Congolese international knew how to play hard to block the climbs of the Niois circles. He never lowered his eyes, even in the toughest times, not hesitating to jostle for respect.
Chirivella (6): the Spaniard did not return his best copy of the season but he was fair enough to serve his attackers. Its openings on the wings allowed the Canaries to dismiss the Aiglons, who were in difficulty in the corridors. Replaced the 72nd minute with Wylan Cyprien (not noted).
Quentin Merlin (6): good climbs in the first period for the left side of Nantes, who however suffered on the breakthroughs of Boudaoui. He had the intelligence to withdraw in the last 40 minutes to close his lane.
Ludovic Blas (5): paradoxically, the only scorer in this final was less good Canaries. Admittedly, he gets the best opportunity from his team in the first period, he does not tremble on the winning penalty, but the playmaker was on the whole irregular and less visible than his two attacking partners.
Randal Kolo Muani (6.5): for one of his last games in Nantes, the Bleuet made a lot of damage. Untenable on the whole front of the attack, the future striker of Eintracht Frankfurt gave the Aiglons a hard time thanks to his burst of speed and his incessant percussion.
Moses Simon (6.5): the Nigerian winger was present in this final. On his left side, he often set fire and gave Todibo headaches, whose large size had difficulty keeping up. He could have made the break around the hour mark without a saving return from a Niois defender. Replaced the 72nd minute with Osman Bukari (not noted).
+ Find the results and the classification of the Coupe de France on Maxifoot
And for you, who were the best and worst players of the game? Comment in the “comments” box below!