Lille in pole position to keep Pepe amid Barcelona interest

pepeLille forward Nicolas Pepe has had a cracking start to the season – no headlines there – with five goals from his first eight appearances. Included among those goals was a hattrick in the club’s 3-2 win at Amiens in September, and as a result the 23-year-old has found himself in some demand from around Europe. Spanish giants Barcelona are one club to have been credited with an interest in him, while Premier League outfits Arsenal and Everton have also reportedly been keeping tabs on his progress. It would seem easy, then, to assume he could be bringing an end to his time in France after arriving in 2017 with a move to pastures new, but it would appear that the former Angers forward would prefer to remain with Les Dogues – for now, at least.

Continue reading

Great move for Lille to sign Jose Fonte

fonteRumours have been swirling over the past few days that French Ligue 1 side Lille OSC could be about to complete the transfer of former Southampton and West Ham defender Jose Fonte to bolster their defence. Les Dogues had a tough time of things last season, narrowly avoiding relegation to Ligue 2, winning out in a race which went right to the wire. They survived at the expense of Toulouse, who went down just a single point behind and with a superior goal difference tally. With that in mind, manager Christophe Galtier looks set to complete one of his primary ambitions this summer in getting in some new faces to shore things up, and in Fonte they are getting a player with a wealth of experience and footballing knowledge.

Continue reading

Ligue 1 Player of the Week – Romain Hamouma (Saint-Etienne)

hamouma

Another day, another Ligue 1 season in the bag. Paris Saint-Germain may have wrapped the title up a good while ago, but there was still plenty of entertainment on display as teams battled for, well….fairly little really. Save for the battle for second and third place between Marseille, Lyon and Monaco, there was little left undecided going into the final round of games. Monaco won that race, incidentally – though for them to finish fourth would have taken a disastrous afternoon indeed. Lyon snuck into third, with Marseille settling for the Europa League spot, despite scoring more and conceding less than the two sides immediately above them. The best show in France, however, was staged at Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, where 33,665 people turned out to watch hosts Saint-Etienne hammer struggling Lille 5-0.

Continue reading