The current situation FC Nantes is in, is somewhat complicated as they are in 15th place in Ligue 1, 3 points behind relegation places and with eight games in a row without winning. This scenario led the board to make a decision: remove their current manager, the experienced Christian Gourcuff, and replace him with Raymond Domenech, former manager of France’s national team.
So far the story seems normal, almost common in today’s football world and especially when it comes to the Ligue 1.
What is not so common is the fact that a manager is hired and he has spent the last 10 years without working in coaching and that is the case of Raymond Domenech, whose last job was with the France national team in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. As a player, Domenech was a full back who spent most of his career at Olympique Lyon and RC Strasbourg, without having a very successful or notorious career.
As a manager, Raymond Domenech started his path with the modest FC Mulhouse side and later he would continue it at Olympique Lyon until 1993 where he would be appointed manager of the Under-21s France national team. As an interesting fact, it is worth pointing out that Raymond Domenech hasn’t coached a football club since 1993, making it 27 years.
In 2004, Raymond Domenech would be appointed as head coach of the France national team where he would remain until 2010, after the FIFA World Cup that year. With France, Domenech had a great championship in the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, reaching the final that they would lose to Italy with that famous incident between Zinedine Zidane and Marco Materazzi.
In 2010, during the FIFA World Cup, he would have an argument with Nicolas Anelka which led Domenech separating him from the rest of the team. The following day, in protest, the rest of the France national team players did not show up for training. That ended up being what would lead the French Football Federation to sack Domenech.
There is also the legend that the French manager selects players based on astrology, of which he is a faithful believer. Domenech makes decisions according to the zodiac sign of each player, which is why a lot was rumored in relation to this issue when a player was not considered for the France national team or was left on the bench in a certain match.