Leader of its Regional 1 group (level 6; 11 wins in 11 matches); the amateur club of Reims Sainte-Anne has not changed anything in its habits (three training sessions in the week) before challenging the Stade de Reims; its neighbor of L1; in the 32nd final of the Coupe de France; this Sunday at 4pm; in Auguste-Delaune. This is the second time in its history that this neighborhood club in the metropolitan area of Reims; where 1998 World Champion Robert Pires wore his first crampons; has reached 32nd place in the event (0-1 against Montpellier in January 2020). Finalist of the Coupe de France in 2000 with Calais (CFA; 4th level) Where he opened the scoring against Nantes (1-2); Jérôme Dutitre (46); the Reims Sainte-Anne coach; believes in surprise.
-Some of their players; like their goalkeeper and captain Grégory Barrilliot; participated in the 32nd final against Montpellier (0-1) two years ago. Did you use this experience to get closer to the derby against Reims?
Not really because it’s in the past and the result has been negative. I strive to have a speech focused on the positive; on our strengths. The aim is to show the boys that the possibility of victory against Stade de Reims is very real; even if it is difficult. Compared to 2020; the team is different; it is not the same coach. And this time; in addition to that; it is a derby. It is magnificent. Several players have passed through the Stade de Reims training center but I urge you not to approach this match with a vengeful spirit; being too aggressive or letting yourself be overwhelmed by emotions.
Did you feel nervous in training this week?
No; but I am impatient. From the draw (November 29th); the guys can’t wait to get to this game. We played last sunday (7-1 against La Chapelle) but this last week has been long.
In 2000; Jérôme Dutitre opened the scoring for Calais (CFA) against Nantes (1-2) in the French Cup final. (M. Deschamps / The team)
Do you feed your talks with your epic of Calais in 2000?
I refer to it with small allusions: * I know what I mean *; * I lived it *… These little words are etched in the minds of children. Without any pretense; I am legitimate because I reached the final of the Coupe de France with an amateur club. It is important to convey to them that the Cup is a wonderful experience. But when you are an amateur; a final 32; you have to live it as a competitor; not as a spectator; saying to yourself: * It’s the party; it’s great … *. Behind; there is room for the next lap and we have a real chance to overtake. Every season there are surprises. Why this year would not be Reims Sainte-Anne? The end of the competition is the final; not the 32nd. That is what I have been telling you since the beginning of the race; when we beat Raon-l’Étape (Route N3; 2-1; 6e) or Bobigny (N2; 1-1; 4 tab to 3; seventh round). In a match; you can compete with anyone; even the professionals.
In 1999-2000; transcended by Ladislas Lozano; CRUFC fans had released two L2 (Lille and Cannes) and two L1 (Strasbourg and Bordeaux) to reach the final of the Coupe de France. (P. Lablatinière / The team)
In your talks; do you draw inspiration from your former coach in Calais; Ladislas Lozano?
We’re different. But; like him; I try to give the players some strength so that when they come out of the dressing room they feel invincible and sure of their ability to be able to beat an L1 and do great things. Ladislas Lozano had this ability to transcend us. When I went out to warm up; I felt like I could knock down mountains. I got used to focusing my daily talks on the strengths and qualities of my team. I speak very little of the rival so as not to give fear or inferiority to my players.
Qualification for the round of 16 would be historic for the club and also for you. As a coach; he has already reached 32nd with Saint-Omer (DH; equivalent to current R1) in 2015-2016 (loss to Boulogne [N]; 2-2 ap 3 tab à 4) …
That year we managed to beat Le Havre (Route L2; 2-0; 7e) a little earlier in the event; making a great game. I am convinced that we can do it with Reims Sainte-Anne against Stade de Reims. “
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