“This week, it was tense”, admitted Matthieu Jalibert at the microphone of Canal + after the match. “You have seen it, there have been statements in the press from our manager, targeted players. I just want to say that we don’t play for Christophe (Urios). We are just on a mission for players like François (Trinh-Duc) or Louis (Picamoles) who will end their careers. After all that they have given to French rugby, we just want to get them out the front door, quite simply. We took matters into our own hands, and today we had a great match. »
A lever, a risk
The manager did not dwell on the handshake with his opener. “I expected it,” he smiled. Matthieu is a champion, as I often say. But it’s both ways. Great players win you great games. Saturday, I saw the Stade Toulousain and I saw Antoine Dupont especially. Let us be inspired! When you want to win titles, you need your great players. Does it shock you that we offend players when they are not very good? “As for Cameron Woki’s gesture: “I didn’t even see it, that’s what I was told,” continues Christophe Urios. “But let him continue like this, let him score tries. I would have preferred him to do it in Perpignan but he didn’t. So the stories after, it’s smoke.
The last card played by Christophe Urios to sting his leaders last week has paid off. But she seems to have broken something. The manager recognizes that it could be a double-edged sword: “I took a big risk because we had to revolt. But there are things that I didn’t like. I will have to fix them next year. I offended players, it was obviously targeted but that’s how it is, that’s life. I got into the locker room this week. It’s the first time it’s happened to me, all against me to go to war. I’ve never had to coach a group like this. I learn. But I have clear ideas, very clear”.
“The boss is me, no one else. Those who don’t want to follow me, they stay on the side. And if ever it’s not right, I’ll leave”
After a rather tense return by bus from Perpignan, Christophe Urios let his group take charge at the start of last week. Maxime Lucu, François Trinh-Duc and Louis Picamoles hosted the video sessions. A kind of self-management? “Not even that, but Christophe was so angry after Perpignan that by the time he digested it, he gave way to the leaders to manage the first two days”, explains third row Bastien Vergnes. “He wanted to leave us the reins,” continues Cameron Woki. And he accompanied us on the weekend. But there were no smiles in practice last week. We didn’t enjoy it. »
New call to order
At halftime of the match against Racing, in the locker room, Christophe Urios said the minimum to his players. “My speech was very short, very basic. I don’t know if it will come back, I don’t cheat. I can’t say it’s good when it’s not good. We have to be careful, we have to be able to accept what we say. When you don’t do everything you need to do what you have decided to do, that’s dangerous. Breaking promises is dangerous. Not for me but for the club, the president, the supporters, we have to be careful, we must not play with that”.