Football -Seychelles all out to bring bronze medal home |26 July 2019
After their painful exit following a severe 0-4 defeat against Reunion on Wednesday at the Auguste Vollaire Stadium in Curepipe, in Mauritius, the Seychelles football team are now focusing on winning the bronze medal of the 10th Indian Ocean Islands Games.
The boys of coach Gavin Jeanne will be in action today in the third-place playoff match against Mayotte who lost the other semifinal 0-1 against hosts Mauritius from a Kevin Perticots penalty in the 117th minute.
For the 10th Indian Ocean Islands Games (IOIG), Seychelles were drawn in group A along with hosts Mauritius and Madagascar and two draws in as many matches placed our national selection second in the group behind Mauritius.
In their first match against Mauritius, Seychelles managed a 1-1 draw with Colin Bibi scoring the equaliser after Ashley Nazirah had given the hosts the lead early in the match.
In their second match, Seychelles could only manage a 0-0 draw against Madagascar and goalkeeper Ian Ah-Kong was the hero after saving Malagasy Xavier Razafindrakoto’s spot kick to keep his team in the race.
In the semifinal, Seychelles met Reunion, a selection whom our local players could not match and they were trounced 4-0.
In today’s match, Seychelles will be playing for pride and coach Jeanne said they will be all for a win to bring the bronze medal home.
Krwar e Reisir magazine managed to get hold of the Seychellois coach who shared his impression about the team’s performance at the 10th Games and the approach ahead of today’s match.
Krwar e Reisir: What were your plans and expectations before the IOIG?
Coach Jeanne: Firstly, the plan was to make it through in the tough group and from then on build on it. In that regards, I can say that the first objective was achieved.
Krwar e Reisir: Did everything go according to plan, if not, what went wrong?
Coach Jeanne: In the first two matches, it did. In the first match against Mauritius, we wanted to slow down the pace of the game because we were playing in front of a large noisy crowd and we managed to get an important draw. As for the second match against Madagascar we wanted to close them down, preventing them from applying their good techniques. It worked perfectly, but we missed too many opportunities to score. In the semifinal, things did not work as planned. The players looked frustrated and lost focus, and they were unable to readjust themselves. Even if we tried to re-arrange our strategies, it was too late.
Krwar e Reisir: Are you satisfied with the team’s performance so far?
Coach Jeanne: Overall, I am happy with the players’ efforts. Our best performance was against Madagascar, but unfortunately we could not repeat it against Reunion.
Krwar e Reisir: What will be the plan for today’s match against Mayotte?
Coach Jeanne: The plan is to get the team back together as they were so disappointed with their own performance in the semifinal and even shed tears after the match. They really want to do well and we will be all out to try and win the bronze medal. We will try our best.
Krwar e Reisir: Are you planning on staying with the team after the IOIG?
Coach Jeanne: I do not know what is next for me as my contract is getting to an end soon. What I know is I want to spend more time with my family after they have suffered so much with me being insulted and abused over the local and social media. I leave my future in the hands of God.
Krwar e Reisir: Anything else you would like to say?
Coach Jeanne: I want to thank all those who supported me during my time as the national team coach and as my contract is about to end, I hope that the next person in the post gets better support. I would like to also thank all those who have criticised me, both positively and negatively. It has made an impact on my life and I am now a better person because of them. It brought me closer to God. Thank you all.
Roland Duval in Mauritius