Claude Puel, here very annoyed by a draw (2-2) conceded by the Greens in December against Nîmes.



  • Absent last week in Strasbourg (1-0) after being affected by the Covid-19, Claude Puel should return to the Stéphanois bench on Sunday (9 p.m.) for the derby.

  • Winner in stoppage time last season in the Cauldron (1-0), the general manager of the Greens is well placed to know the symbolism of this meeting, after having coached OL from 2008 to 2011.

  • In sporting difficulty in the two clubs, Claude Puel does not suffer (for the moment) at all the sling of the supporters in Saint-Etienne, compared to what he was able to live in Gerland.

If there is a Stéphanois who intends to put an end to his isolation due to Covid-19, Sunday for the derby, it is Claude Puel.

The general manager of the Greens admitted on Tuesday that he had a bad experience with his "proxy match" in Strasbourg (1-0).

“As there was a 45-second lag between what I saw and reality, I sometimes heard cries without understanding why,” he explained during a videoconference with the press.

Positive for the coronavirus, like all of his staff and ten players (four of them are now negative), he is hopeful of returning to the sidelines on Sunday (9 p.m.).

This shock of the 21st day of Ligue 1 could be the occasion of a new snub to his former club (from 2008 to 2011), as for his first match as a Stéphanois coach last season, with this unexpected success. (1-0) in the derby thanks to the header from Robert Beric in stoppage time. Ten years earlier, Jean-Michel Aulas ended three chaotic seasons with Claude Puel.

The first non-champion coach at the head of OL since the club began to reign over L1 in 2002, it has known everything, from a semi-final of the Champions League in April 2010 to a 100th derby lost in Gerland (0-1) five months later, a first for 16 years.

"Puel gave the impression of wanting to revolutionize everything"

The remix of

Mon Amant de Saint-Jean

then raged for many months in the north Lyon turn: “How not to lose your mind with seven titles in a row?

It's been two years since we won anything, Puel will do you in… ”.

A few days after this famous derby won by the Greens, 50 “Puel resignation” banners were even placed on all the bridges of Lyon by the Bad Gones.

“In addition to his sports management which was a failure compared to the means devoted [arrivals of Lloris, Lisandro, Bastos, Gomis, Gourcuff…], he was also very bad on human relations, whether with certain players, the club staff and especially the supporters, regrets a regular in the north Lyon turn.

For example, he excessively "bunkerized" the Tola Vologe training center.


A longtime supporter of the South Turn, Richard continues: “Puel immediately gave the impression of wanting to draw a line on the past and revolutionize everything.

He also launched the fashion in Lyon of speeches of victimization ”.

Jean-Pierre du Virage Nord also keeps in mind his “monotonous tone” and “the absence of

mea culpa

after the 100th derby lost”.

Because it is this victorious free kick from Dimitri Payet which accelerated the anti-Puel sling led by the Bad Gones.

Insulting and threatening tags were even entered near the home of the Lyon coach, just before the end of the 2010-2011 season.

In October 2010, 50 banners demanding the resignation of Claude Puel were hung on many bridges in the Lyon area.


Fofana, Ruffier, Thuilot, so many sensitive issues for Puel

Unsinkable, Claude Puel took the blows without flinching, except by claiming 7 million euros from OL at the industrial tribunal (he was dismissed) after his dismissal for "serious misconduct" in June 2011. Accused in 2012 by Jean -Michel Aulas for having "betrayed OL" and for having plunged the club into "a sinistrose", Claude Puel did not discover in October 2020 a much more peaceful environment in the neighbor of Saint-Etienne.

After a sluggish maintenance obtained in 17th place last year following the premature end of Ligue 1, he had to face the economic difficulties of the club, initially at the end of the transfer window of Wesley Fofana that he wanted keep at all costs, and the exhausting conflict with Stéphane Ruffier.

Jean-Michel Aulas supported Claude Puel for a very long time, before dismissing him for serious misconduct in June 2011. He benefited from several major recruits, like Lisandro here in 2009. - PHILIPPE MERLE / AFP

But even a crazy series of seven consecutive defeats during the fall and then the recent departure of general manager Xavier Thuilot, who came with him to Saint-Etienne, did not prevent him from staying the course.

Under contract until June 2022, he ensures not to worry about his fate, despite the current 16th place.

"It is not I who am weakened but ASSE, compared to a previous economic model which was no longer viable then by the pandemic", he recalled Tuesday.

The Greens have chambered the Lyonnais with a banner "Puel resignation"

For the past week, a collective bringing together the Green Angels 92 and the Indépendantistes Stéphanois 98 has been sending out a clear message via a press release and banners.

He wants "to get rid of Bernard Caïazzo and Roland Romeyer".

The two presidents thus crystallize the anger of Saint-Etienne supporters who cannot be heard in the Cauldron.

"Claude Puel is in my opinion the man for the job in this difficult period for ASSE, notes Eric (55), loyal supporter of the Greens.

His project is difficult to carry out but I believe in it completely and I hope that the management will not make the mistake of unloading him, when he is only at the beginning of his mission.

It is more the solution than the problem.


Claude Puel sends his instructions to Ryad Boudebouz, here during the last derby in the Chaudron, in October 2019. PHILIPPE DESMAZES - AFP

Patience with Claude Puel and his plan to rejuvenate the workforce, with an ambitious game to boot, which contrasts with the almost endlessly tense situation with the supporters in Lyon.

“Maybe the 'Stephs' don't think they can aim higher as a coach.

In any case, if he manages to bring them down, he will regain some credit in our eyes, ”says Richard.

As for Jean-Pierre, he has not forgotten that the supporters of Saint-Etienne had deployed a “Puel resignation” banner in Gerland during this 100th derby in 2010 to chamber the neighbor of Lyon.

"It is a pleasure to see the Greens in total trouble with Puel as a coach," he smiles.

Who could have imagined that he would come to train them ten years later?

They will be able to quickly reuse this banner… ”


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