Ibrahim Sissoko (att)(free agent); Moussa Doumbia (att)(free agent); Saad Agouzoul (def)(free agent); Roli Pereira de Sa (mid)(FC Nantes); Sambou Yatabaré (mid)(Valenciennes FC); Yoël Armougom (def)(SM Caen); Daylam Meddah (mid)(Angers SCO); Adama Niane (att)(USL Dunkerque, end of loan); Walid Jaarmouni (att)(FC Sète 34, end of loan); Julien Faussurier (def)(Stade Brestois); Valentine Ozornwafor (def)(RCS Charleroi, on loan); Franck Kanouté (mid)(Cercle Bruges, on loan);
Christophe Diedhiou (sp)(def)(Quevilly Rouen Metropole); Quentin Galvez-Diarra (gk)(Pau FC); Florentin Pogba (r)(def)(ATK Mohun Bagan); Walid Jaarmouni (Pau FC); Elias Filet (att)(Pr Niederkorn, on loan); Osseynou Thioune (r)(mid)(released); Adama Niane (att)(released); Nathan Zohoré (def)(released); Marvin Senaya (sp)(def)(Racing Club de Strasbourg, end of loan); Yann Kitala (sp)(att)(Le Havre); Steve Ambri (sp)(att)(Sheriff Tiraspol);
The 20-year-old love story between Sochaux and Omar Daf, player, coach in the youth system and then head coach, came to an end after what was the best season for the club in almost a decade. Sochaux made it to the promotion playoffs, eventually losing to Auxerre, after spending the whole campaign in the top 6, especially thanks to a solid defence, the third best in the league. Daf and the management failed to agree on the planning of the future and their parting ways was the logical conclusion. Olivier Guégan, coming off great seasons in Grenoble and a mixed stint in Valenciennes, where he got the sacking in his second season in charge, is the new man at the helm.
The back-bone of the squad was maintained unaltered over the summer, with just a few players departing. In fact, they lost starting centre-back Pogba and central midfielder Thioune together with some back-ups, Diedhiou, also a centre-back, winger Ambri and striker Kitala. Beside them, right-back Senaya returned to his parent club. None of them should be actually missed. More excellent departures could actually occur in the next weeks, though, with holding midfielder Ndiaye and 18-year-old wonder-boy Virginius (8 goals and 4 assists in less than 1400 minutes played in Ligue 2) still attracting offers by several major clubs.
In terms of new signings, 30-something Faussurier and Yatabare should represent the main replacements for the departed starters. On the other hand, Sissoko is set to become more than just a valid alternative to Kalulu up-front. Most of the other new arrivals, Pereira, Kanoute and Armougom above all, are going to add depth to a squad that looked a bit too limited in the past campaign.
Sochaux clearly intend to figh for promotion once again. They have all the quality needed to but it has to be seen whether Guégan can really represent a valid replacement for Daf.