The decisive goal of Guessand, the inspirations of Ludovic Blas, but also the match missed by Olympiakos: find the Tops and Flops of Nantes’ great comeback in the European Cup (2-1).
Guessand renamed “Golden Helmet”?
Evann Guessand will long remember his first European match with Nantes. The former Nice player was hard-hitting on his right wing but above all scored the winning goal of a thrilling match on a perfect header after a cross from Blas in the 93e minute. A goal in the last moments of the header, this should bring back memories to his coach Antoine Kombouaré, nicknamed the Golden Helmet in his golden era at PSG. Also lively and technical, Guessand put Olympiakos’ left lane in great difficulty and represented a constant threat. He did not just attack since we also saw him recover some precious balloons. In short, a full game.
Blas, a precious left foot
The Nantes left-hander did well to stay. Because it is he who guides his entire team. Ludovic Blas shone again in midfield. Positioned in number 10, he had full latitude to express himself and make his partners play. Visitors encountered some difficulties in containing it, as in this action at the 32e minute when he was well engulfed in space and served on a Mohamed plateau for the opener of the Nantes score. He never let up on his efforts and delivered a second assist on a perfect cross for Guessand. So precious.
Merlin, the rising side
One of the revelations of last season, Quentin Merlin confirms all the good that we can think of him this season. And this game is no exception. Reconverted to the side by Antoine Kombouaré, the player trained at the Canaries shines and makes the quality of his left foot speak. So many centers well sent from his wing but also an overflowing activity. He was consistent throughout the game and was also rigorous defensively. A truly complete player.
La Beaujoire has been waiting for this for a long time
20 years of waiting is a long time, and we were able to measure it this Thursday evening in the enclosure of La Beaujoire. The Nantes supporters had been waiting for some time to be able to taste European evenings again and went all out to make this evening unforgettable. The fantastic atmosphere that resided in the compound inevitably transcended the players on the pitch. A public that once again showed its exemplarity and capsized in pure madness on the 2e goal scored in extra time.
He was announced to be more experienced than Nantes but Olympiakos was very disappointed on the lawn of Beaujoire. Coming with a fairly dense 3-4-3 in the middle and in the axis, the Greek club disappointed from start to finish, distinguishing itself by a lot of waste in its game and a very friable defense on the opposing incursions. The absence of the French Yann M’Vila, sick, was felt in the midfield in particular.
Hwang, too isolated
Arrived from Bordeaux, Hwang Ui-jo did not have an obvious match to negotiate. Alone at the forefront of a defensive team, the South Korean fought well but was little served in the best conditions. We have seen him pressing sometimes in a vacuum and he will quickly forget this first European match with his new team.
Lafont, a mistake that could have been fatal
Often irreproachable, Alban Lafont made a mistake this Thursday evening. While his team was leading in the score but seemed in a weak time after returning from the locker room, the French goalkeeper made an error out of an opposing corner and caused the goal against Moutoussamy’s own camp. So serene as usual, Lafont was surprisingly at fault. Errors that do not forgive at this level. Fortunately for him, Guessand made him less important.