Insight

Paris match

Christophe Galtier does not arrive with the fanfare of some of his predecessors – but Ian Holyman says he is just what Paris need

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Insight
‘Go for the win’

An insight into Christophe Galtier’s coaching philosophy

A dip into our archives has thrown up a 2019 interview with the new Paris boss that gives fans a prescient picture of what to expect in 2022/23. His team then was LOSC, but the fundamentals were already in place...

“If we work hard in training, are demanding of ourselves and constantly seek to improve, I’m not saying that we’re guaranteed to get results in games, but we’ve got a better chance of achieving results. It’s about organisation and mindset. I experienced it myself: I made my first-team debut [for Marseille] at 17, playing alongside very experienced players. They taught me what this job was about, and my senior players need to convey that experience to my younger players.

“When you’re a young coach with limited resources, your primary focus is to avoid relegation and lose as few games as you can. Over time, the main focus of my philosophy became: how can we win as many games as possible? People come to the stadium to see a team play and go for the win. 

“I remain convinced that the keener you are on being attack-minded, the more likely you are to win games. You need to bring the ball forward very quickly. Even if you lose one because you were too bold and naive, you’ll win the next three.”

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Read the full story
Sign up now to get access to this and every premium feature on Champions Journal. You will also get access to member-only competitions and offers. And you get all of that completely free!

Galtier instead of glitter. However, his press conferences are among the most interesting and most entertaining in French football. He doesn’t come with a big technical entourage but he does have long-time assistant Thierry Oleksiak with him – and, excitingly, is also reunited with Luis Campos, the sporting director with whom he constructed LOSC’s title win.

“The way of working with Luis means there is no compromise; it’s all about hard work and the team,” said Galtier at his official presentation. “I’m determined to make sure the team is united. If players cross lines, they’ll be discarded.”

That was the stick – but with Galtier there is also the carrot, provided by a coach who “likes to see his players happy”. He passed a message via the media to Neymar: “I have a very precise idea of what I want from Neymar. I’ll also be there to listen.”

That is Galtier, a highly competent but very human coach. He turned Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang into an out-an-out goalscorer while at Saint-Étienne; he kept faith with Jonathan David at LOSC when the Canada international, purchased for a club record fee, failed to find the net in his first 13 competitive appearances.

The only people Galtier must now convince are the Paris fans. In their eyes he has “never done it at a big club”, nor managed a squad packed with egos to match their enormous talent. And secondly he is from Marseille, Paris’ most bitter rival. “I was born in Marseille, that’s a fact,” said Galtier, who also played for OM. “But you want to win the biggest trophies, coach the best players. There’s no better place than Paris for that. I’ve put my Marseille origins to one side.” If he wins — and his track record suggests he will — his accent will not be a problem.

Insight
‘Go for the win’

An insight into Christophe Galtier’s coaching philosophy

A dip into our archives has thrown up a 2019 interview with the new Paris boss that gives fans a prescient picture of what to expect in 2022/23. His team then was LOSC, but the fundamentals were already in place...

“If we work hard in training, are demanding of ourselves and constantly seek to improve, I’m not saying that we’re guaranteed to get results in games, but we’ve got a better chance of achieving results. It’s about organisation and mindset. I experienced it myself: I made my first-team debut [for Marseille] at 17, playing alongside very experienced players. They taught me what this job was about, and my senior players need to convey that experience to my younger players.

“When you’re a young coach with limited resources, your primary focus is to avoid relegation and lose as few games as you can. Over time, the main focus of my philosophy became: how can we win as many games as possible? People come to the stadium to see a team play and go for the win. 

“I remain convinced that the keener you are on being attack-minded, the more likely you are to win games. You need to bring the ball forward very quickly. Even if you lose one because you were too bold and naive, you’ll win the next three.”

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Insight
Paris match

An insight into Christophe Galtier’s coaching philosophy

A dip into our archives has thrown up a 2019 interview with the new Paris boss that gives fans a prescient picture of what to expect in 2022/23. His team then was LOSC, but the fundamentals were already in place...

“If we work hard in training, are demanding of ourselves and constantly seek to improve, I’m not saying that we’re guaranteed to get results in games, but we’ve got a better chance of achieving results. It’s about organisation and mindset. I experienced it myself: I made my first-team debut [for Marseille] at 17, playing alongside very experienced players. They taught me what this job was about, and my senior players need to convey that experience to my younger players.

“When you’re a young coach with limited resources, your primary focus is to avoid relegation and lose as few games as you can. Over time, the main focus of my philosophy became: how can we win as many games as possible? People come to the stadium to see a team play and go for the win. 

“I remain convinced that the keener you are on being attack-minded, the more likely you are to win games. You need to bring the ball forward very quickly. Even if you lose one because you were too bold and naive, you’ll win the next three.”

Insight

Paris match

Christophe Galtier does not arrive with the fanfare of some of his predecessors – but Ian Holyman says he is just what Paris need

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Insight
Penalty Pedigree

Etiam erat velit scelerisque in dictum non. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at. Scelerisque felis imperdiet proin fermentum leo. Nibh tortor id aliquet lectus proin nibh nisl. Nulla at volutpat diam ut venenatis. At urna condimentum mattis pellentesque id nibh tortor id aliquet. Leo a diam sollicitudin tempor id eu nisl nunc mi. Dui vivamus arcu felis bibendum ut. Pharetra convallis posuere morbi leo urna molestie. Adipiscing at in tellus integer feugiat scelerisque. In arcu cursus euismod quis. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at lectus urna duis. Facilisi nullam vehicula ipsum a arcu cursus. At tempor commodo ullamcorper a lacus vestibulum sed arcu non. Ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Vitae sapien pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus. Eget nullam non nisi est sit amet facilisis. Ipsum consequat nisl vel pretium lectus quam. Elit sed vulputate mi sit amet mauris commodo quis. Pretium fusce id velit ut tortor pretium viverra suspendisse potenti.

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Read the full story
Sign up now to get access to this and every premium feature on Champions Journal. You will also get access to member-only competitions and offers. And you get all of that completely free!

Galtier instead of glitter. However, his press conferences are among the most interesting and most entertaining in French football. He doesn’t come with a big technical entourage but he does have long-time assistant Thierry Oleksiak with him – and, excitingly, is also reunited with Luis Campos, the sporting director with whom he constructed LOSC’s title win.

“The way of working with Luis means there is no compromise; it’s all about hard work and the team,” said Galtier at his official presentation. “I’m determined to make sure the team is united. If players cross lines, they’ll be discarded.”

That was the stick – but with Galtier there is also the carrot, provided by a coach who “likes to see his players happy”. He passed a message via the media to Neymar: “I have a very precise idea of what I want from Neymar. I’ll also be there to listen.”

That is Galtier, a highly competent but very human coach. He turned Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang into an out-an-out goalscorer while at Saint-Étienne; he kept faith with Jonathan David at LOSC when the Canada international, purchased for a club record fee, failed to find the net in his first 13 competitive appearances.

The only people Galtier must now convince are the Paris fans. In their eyes he has “never done it at a big club”, nor managed a squad packed with egos to match their enormous talent. And secondly he is from Marseille, Paris’ most bitter rival. “I was born in Marseille, that’s a fact,” said Galtier, who also played for OM. “But you want to win the biggest trophies, coach the best players. There’s no better place than Paris for that. I’ve put my Marseille origins to one side.” If he wins — and his track record suggests he will — his accent will not be a problem.

Insight
‘Go for the win’

An insight into Christophe Galtier’s coaching philosophy

A dip into our archives has thrown up a 2019 interview with the new Paris boss that gives fans a prescient picture of what to expect in 2022/23. His team then was LOSC, but the fundamentals were already in place...

“If we work hard in training, are demanding of ourselves and constantly seek to improve, I’m not saying that we’re guaranteed to get results in games, but we’ve got a better chance of achieving results. It’s about organisation and mindset. I experienced it myself: I made my first-team debut [for Marseille] at 17, playing alongside very experienced players. They taught me what this job was about, and my senior players need to convey that experience to my younger players.

“When you’re a young coach with limited resources, your primary focus is to avoid relegation and lose as few games as you can. Over time, the main focus of my philosophy became: how can we win as many games as possible? People come to the stadium to see a team play and go for the win. 

“I remain convinced that the keener you are on being attack-minded, the more likely you are to win games. You need to bring the ball forward very quickly. Even if you lose one because you were too bold and naive, you’ll win the next three.”

If you don’t know much about Christophe Galtier then you haven’t been listening. Or maybe you don’t speak French. The new Paris Saint-Germain coach only speaks faltering English – his success in France, however, expresses itself fluently. 

One-time assistant to Alain Perrin at the likes of Sochaux, Portsmouth, Lyon and Saint-Étienne, he took the reins of the latter in 2009, succeeding his former boss. Under Galtier, Les Verts punched consistently above their weight, winning the league cup in 2013. He took over from Marcelo Bielsa at Lille in 2017 and pulled them away from relegation; after that they finished Ligue 1 runners-up, fourth and, against all odds, then pipped his new employers to the title by a point in 2020/21. Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe then saw Galtier as the man to skipper his ambitious project at Nice, whom he took to fifth place and the Coupe de France final last season, his sole campaign on the Côte d’Azur.

The forward roll he executed on the sidelines in celebration during LOSC’s title-winning campaign was unusual even for the expressive Galtier, but he does usually expend as much energy in the technical area as he expects from his team on the pitch. “Fans come to the stadium to see lively, alert, attacking play – to see the team play to win,” he said while at LOSC. 

That philosophy, coupled with Galtier’s low profile in European terms, fits with the revamped approach of Paris’s Qatari owners. Since their arrival in the French capital in 2011 the club has amassed a treasure trove of trophies, and last season they equalled Saint-Étienne’s tally of ten top-flight crowns. But the Champions League has eluded them – and last season’s collapse to Real Madrid has prompted a change of tack.

“Perhaps we should change our slogan,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al Khelaifi in June, referring to the ‘Dream Bigger’ legend that is plastered around the Parc des Princes. “Dream bigger is good but today we must be realistic; we don’t want flashy, bling-bling anymore. It’s the end of the glitter.”

Insight
Penalty Pedigree

Etiam erat velit scelerisque in dictum non. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at. Scelerisque felis imperdiet proin fermentum leo. Nibh tortor id aliquet lectus proin nibh nisl. Nulla at volutpat diam ut venenatis. At urna condimentum mattis pellentesque id nibh tortor id aliquet. Leo a diam sollicitudin tempor id eu nisl nunc mi. Dui vivamus arcu felis bibendum ut. Pharetra convallis posuere morbi leo urna molestie. Adipiscing at in tellus integer feugiat scelerisque. In arcu cursus euismod quis. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at lectus urna duis. Facilisi nullam vehicula ipsum a arcu cursus. At tempor commodo ullamcorper a lacus vestibulum sed arcu non. Ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Vitae sapien pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus. Eget nullam non nisi est sit amet facilisis. Ipsum consequat nisl vel pretium lectus quam. Elit sed vulputate mi sit amet mauris commodo quis. Pretium fusce id velit ut tortor pretium viverra suspendisse potenti.

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