Oct 12, 2059
|Age||-39 years old|
After 5 seasons as majority shareholder, François Pinault decided to have a clear-out at Stade Rennais in the Summer of 2002. As his first deed, he named Pierre Dréossi as General Manager, a post which he had already occupied at Lille. Presented as one of the best in that role, Dréossi’s mission was to implement a new sporting and financial policy at the club. In spite of the arrival of Cech, one of the best goalkeepers in the world, his first attempt at recruitment backfired, with Loeschbor, Fleurquin, Ivanov and Manager Bergeroo replaced by Halilhodzic after just 10 matches. The appointment of Bölöni in 2003 was a much more astute choice, which combined with the signings of Källström, Frei and then Utaka, Mensah as well as the emergence of Faty, Bourillon, Gourcuff and Didot, enabled the club to figure regularly in the top half of the table, and to achieve direct qualification for the UEFA Cup in 2005. In 2006/2007 he became First Team Manager and only missed out on a Champions League spot in the dying seconds of the season. To take things to the next level, he recruited more tried and tested players who came at a cost in terms of their salary (Pagis, Wiltord, Leroy), but things didn’t work out with the youngsters. He stepped down, leaving his role to Guy Lacombe at the end of 2007, and Lacombe got things back on track, and the team finished the season with qualification for the Intertoto Cup. Despite achieving a club record 61 points in 2008/2009, and reaching the French Cup Final, tensions between Dréossi and Lacombe came to a head. In the summer of 2009, Antonetti became the new Manager at the club, with the task of bringing through the youngsters from the vintage generation with the likes of Théophile-Catherine, M’Vila, Brahimi or Kembo-Ekoko, or recruiting from overseas to achieve their European objectives. In addition to this new trend, the club installed a visionary wage structure policy which enabled the club to pre-empt the fall in French clubs’ playing budgets, whilst remaining attractive, via a revolutionary bonus system, unheard of in France at that time. The 2012/2013 season with the League Cup Final loss to Saint Etienne, and a catastrophic end to the season, proved to be fatal for Dréossi. Just like Manager Antonetti, the majority shareholder showed him the door in June 2013. The club’s organisational chart was turned upside-down, and no longer included the role of General Manager.