Galtier: "It's a kind of the story of our season"
Here is Christophe Galtier's press conference after the Gym's defeat against Lille (1-3).
What is your analysis of the match?
I think we deserve to be ahead in the first half, certainly more so than we were in the second. We were on the right track, there was rhythm, intensity, the desire to attack, to score. We were unfortunate with a shot that hit the crossbar, one that hit both posts, and some saves by the keeper. And then there's the start of the second half, 20 minutes where we're completely off our game and we give hope to a team that seemed to be in great difficulty and that struggled in the first half. We gave them hope by putting less rhythm, by losing the battle in the midfield. We were punished. They are a team with players who are used to playing in big competitions and who have character, whereas we completely collapsed in the first 20 minutes. After that, we tried to push, we had chances, but without success. The third goal is not the most important thing, it's mainly what happened in the first 20 minutes of the second half that brings us here, with a great disappointment. We had the destiny in our hands: by winning, we could have hoped to be in Europe. History dictates that with this second half, we must first win in Reims, and we'll keep our fingers crossed that the competitors slip up a bit.
Looking at the other results, it’s a nightmare for you...
In terms of results, at half-time we were doing very well, and in the 95th minute we were not doing well at all. That's how it is. We'll see what we can do on the last day, and we'll keep our fingers crossed that the other competitors lose points. We all wanted to win. As much as I couldn't explain what happened in the first half against Saint-Etienne, what happened in the second half tonight is difficult to explain. I can see that we didn't defend well, we didn't defend well in midfield and up front, to put this team under pressure. At 1-2, they are a team that likes space, that likes to defend well and that made it difficult for us.
What did you say at half-time?
I asked my players to continue to play as they did in the first half, to create more danger in front of the Lille goal. Before the first goal, we had a great chance with a save from their keeper. The aim was to continue to be consistent in the second half by putting a lot of pressure on the opponent. We didn't manage to do that, for some reason. Is it the because it’s the third game of the week? I don't know. Obviously it's a second half and a result that we' re very frustrated about.
The players looked devastated at the end of the game on the pitch. Was it the same in the dressing room?
Yes, everyone in the dressing room was very disappointed and affected. We'll give the group some time to recover and we'll continue to work to go to Reims with great determination to beat them, and then we'll see.
A word about the Emiliano Sala T-shirts distributed to the fans and the tribute paid to him.
It was a good initiative from everyone, from the club and from the fans at the stadium. There was what there was three days ago, there was a tribute. I hope that this will erase what happened against Saint-Etienne. It was the least the club and the fans could do, and everyone did it well.
After the final in Nantes and tonight's defeat, do your players have the mental capacity to get back up?
It's kind of the story of our season. We'll really assess the situation on Saturday evening or Sunday after the Reims match. We've noticed that we've been struggling for some time to be consistent over the course of a match. Is there too much at stake? When you are in a project like ours, the ambition is to be in Europe and to go as far as possible in all competitions. We missed out in the final, we missed out on a significant achievement. We'll analyse all that when it's over. We'll see what happens. One minute we're up and then down, the next minute we're down and then up. This lack of consistency is perhaps linked to the personality of the group, but also, perhaps, to its youth.