Sochaux

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Round 4

Lorient 1 - 0 Sochaux
2019-08-16 20:00 More Reports
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2019-08-23 19:00:00 More Previews
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Season Guide
2019/2020

Sochaux

In


Pape Paye (def) from AS Nancy Lorraine; Jeremy Livolant (mid) on loan from EA Guingamp; Christophe Diedhiou (def) from Gazelec Ajaccio; Fabien Ourega (mid) from Paris FC

Out


Thomas Robinet (sp) (att) to Villefranche Beaujolais; Momo Sissoko (sp) (mid) - released; Yohan Mollo (r) (att) - released; Franck Etoundi (sp) (att) - released; Alexandre Nsakala (def) and Jean Ruiz (r) (def) to FC Sion (SUI); Lucien Agoume (sp) (mid) to Inter (ITA); Jeando Fuchs (r) (mid) and Olivier Verdon (r) (def) to Alaves (ESP); Cyrille Bayala (sp) (att) to RC Lens - loan ended; Elisha Owusu (sp) (mid) to Lyon - loan ended; Christopher Rocchia (sp) (def) to Marseille - loan ended; Hamza Sakhi (sp) (mid) to AJ Auxerre - loan ended; Rafa Paez (sp) (def) and Emanuel Anderson (sp) (att) to Alaves - loans ended

Sochaux avoided relegation on a dramatic final day last season, but it remains to be seen if this will be a new beginning for the troubled club. The former Peugeot works side, two-time French champions in the interwar years, have since been given the green light to carry on in Ligue 2 by the league's financial watchdog after doubts had been raised. However, uncertainty continues to reign off the field at the Stade Bonal, which last hosted top-flight football in 2014. After the failed experiment which saw the club run by the Spanish group who are in charge of La Liga outfit Alaves, the Chinese group Nenking are now set to take control in eastern France. But can they give coach Omar Daf the playing resources he needs to make a successful fist of the season ahead? A long list of players have moved on, with Jeando Fuchs and Benin centre-back Olivier Verdon being snapped up by Alaves while the sale of hot midfield prospect Lucien Agoume to Italian giants Inter was necessary to keep the financial wolves at bay. However, Daf has been left with a meagre squad with time running out before the campaign begins. Pape Paye and Christophe Diedhiou add experience, but more faces are required as soon as possible. "Compared to last season, the area where we must improve is in attack, so clearly that is where reinforcements are a priority," said Daf, whose team face Caen at home on the opening weekend. "I lost 14 players in the close season, experienced players, so we have to try to replace them." It is a daunting prospect, and it is far too early to say where Sochaux could be sitting nine months from now.

Target


Mid-table security would surely be a success.

Season Review
2018/2019

№16: Sochaux

Off-field troubles continue to make life difficult for Sochaux on the pitch. The former Peugeot factory side, who have spent almost 70 years in the top flight of French football, are now set to be sold by their Chinese owners to another group from China. Those currently at the helm clearly do not have the appetite to lead the team into a sixth consecutive campaign in Ligue 2. At least they will not be in the third tier next season, though. Les Lionceaux went into the final day of the campaign in the relegation play-off place and still at risk of going down automatically, possibly straight into oblivion. In the end they survived thanks to a 3-1 win at home to Grenoble, in a match played before an empty Stade Bonal as a punishment for a pitch invasion a couple of weeks previously. Fans have been desperately unhappy with the way their club has been run, and the decision to put a Spanish consortium in charge at the beginning of the season backfired badly. A Spanish coach, Jose Manuel Aira, was fired in late November with the team in the bottom three. Former player Omar Daf was given the reins and did just enough to keep the team up, although they had the worst attack in the division with a paltry 24 goals scored. Bosnian striker Ermedin Demirovic left in January when his loan from Alaves in Spain was cut short, but he remained their leading scorer with four league goals. They were handicapped by an injury to talented Cameroon international defensive midfielder Jeando Fuchs, who missed much of the second half of the campaign, and Daf has since been handed an extension to his contract. Fuchs and other young talents to come from the club's renowned academy will undoubtedly move on as offers come in. Midfielder Lucien Agoume, 17, and France under-21 international goalkeeper Maxence Prevot are among those who will be of interest to other clubs, and it remains to be seen just what kind of state Sochaux will be in next season. At least they will still be in Ligue 2.


Player of the Season: Maxence Prevot

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