"Is the step too high?"
The question, asked by Christophe Galtier, dates from March 28th.
Le Losc lost pole at home by losing logically (1-2) against Nîmes, penultimate in Ligue 1. A second unprecedented defeat in a row, four days after the elimination in the Coupe de France against PSG (3 -0), that the Lille technician could not explain.
His group, leader surprised so far in the nose and beard of PSG since the end of January, was he about to crack eight days from the end?
The people of Lille had since proven just the opposite.
With panache, they had returned to the throne thanks to an almost flawless performance, notably by winning in Paris, Lyon and their rival Lensois.
Only, this Sunday evening, the Mastiffs facing Saint-Etienne suffered in their palace, in Pierre-Mauroy (Villeneuve-d'Ascq).
Cracked, no, since a draw always offers them a point ahead of PSG before the final day, but really pained.
A missing fluidity
Jostled from the start, beaten in the midfield and sometimes nervous, they created only one clear opportunity before the break. Luiz Araújo, well found in the area by Yilmaz, does not catch the frame (36th). The reverse would have been surprising given the waste displayed by the Brazilian winger, quickly replaced. For its part, the Yilmaz-David duo struggles to find themselves in the direction of the goal. The Northerners' first shot on target did not arrive until the hour mark, a harmless strike from Soumaré from 30 m.
With the success that had characterized them for example the previous week against Lens, the victory seemed playable.
Not there, despite three huge chances for Yilmaz in the dying minutes.
Despite greater control at the end of the game, and the good comeback from Renato Sanches, this team has never regained its fluidity and managed to trap the opponent in the transition phases.
One last match in Angers, winner in the first leg
In view of the atmosphere offered by thousands of northern supporters in front of the hotel and the players' bus a few hours before this last home meeting, road traffic in the vicinity of Angers could well turn red next Sunday.
Atmosphere of fire at the arrival of the bus of Lille players #LOSCASSE pic.twitter.com/QLDx1LoYpv
- Le Parisien - Sports (@LeParisienSport) May 16, 2021
For his last trip, and while PSG will challenge Brest, it will be necessary to win a priori. A simple formality in the face of an adversary already saved and that we are freewheeling? Not so sure. The Scoïstes almost snatched a draw at the Vélodrome this Sunday (3-2) and will be keen to celebrate one last time their historic coach Stéphane Moulin, on the start after ten years of romance.
But, above all, the SCO is one of the three teams with Brest and Nîmes to know the recipe for the feat. So why not do it again? The Angevins had picked them after the Christmas holidays after a perfect score (1-2). “What would be exceptional is to beat them twice. But I believe that in the form in which they are currently… ”estimated Saturday the Angevin coach, a little fatalistic, in an interview with France Football. Perhaps he has changed his mind since Lille blew his first cartridge.