Stade Rennais looking for a second wind
Caught up by their pursuers in the race for Europe, the Rennais did not manage to find the level displayed before the World Cup.
The urgency is already there for Stade Rennais. If Bruno Génésio and his men do not find the remedy, Europe could well fly by the end of the season. Suffering since the post-World Cup recovery, the entire Rennes squad is ill before traveling to Auxerre this Saturday (5 p.m.), during the 27th day of L1.
The competition has regained color and added pressure on the shoulders of Bruno Génésio. Since the resumption of the championship, Rennes is in 11th place in the league 1 standings over the period, between the 15th and the 27th day of this weekend. A pace that does not match the European ambitions of the Breton club. Enthusiastic at the start of the season, Rennes’ game has lost its luster and victories are becoming rarer. And despite some obvious reasons, this misshapen cannot be fully explained.
Where have the goals gone?
Second best attack in Ligue 1 until December (31 goals scored in 15 matches), the Reds and Blacks can no longer do it. In the first part of the season, Amine Gouiri’s teammates were shooting at more than two goals per game, with incessant waves in the opposing area. But since then, the situation has changed (1.27 goals per match) and it was mainly injuries that did not spare the Rennes attack.
By losing Martin Terrier for many months at the start of the year, she found herself deprived of her best offensive asset (9 goals, 4 assists in 16 matches). Adding to this the poor form of Gouiri (3 goals in 11 matches) and the physical glitches of Jérémy Doku, hopes rest on Karl Toko Ekambi, who arrived at the end of January but not yet decisive and the young Arnaud Kalimuendo, defector from PSG in the off-season. . A situation that is not easy to manage for Génésio, who has to deal with other difficulties in the defensive sector.
Not spared from injuries in other areas of the game either, Stade Rennais also lost their right-back Hamari Traoré, who has been absent since early February and whose return is scheduled for March. A loss with an impact on the sporting but also human level as the Malian, as a good captain, is the real leader of this team and its defense. And while Bruno Genesio tries to find the right formula, the Rennes defense lacks benchmarks (15 goals conceded in 10 games).
So in order not to see Europe slip into the hands of the Bretons, changes are expected from the former Lyon coach. If he hopes to see players like Benjamin Bourigeaud and Gouiri be decisive again, he is also counting on the return of Traoré to regain leadership and bring experience to a group that lacks maturity on the ground (4th youngest squad of Ligue 1). The revival of Rennes could also go through tactical changes that Génésio has been trying to find for several weeks… without success. So if the Champions League, the objective of the start of the season, is still within reach, it will first be necessary to heal to ensure Europe.