Sep 13, 1972
|Age||49 years old|
Olivier Echouafni signed for Stade Rennais during the 2000 transfer window, which was marked by expenditure of over 53 Million Euros by the Breton club. Developed at Olympique Marseille, this defensive midfielder arrived from Strasbourg for 1.2 Million Euros to bolster an area where Bassila had been particularly disappointing until that point. Under the management of Le Guen, Echouafni became an effective foil for the defence and developed a good understanding with Le Roux in build-up play. After half a season of settling in, he also started to confirm himself as a player who could also contribute to the attack, making good use of his aerial prowess (one of the best in France) and scored 4 goals in three months. In the 2001/2002 season, Gourcuff left him out of his plans, and often selected Grégoire ahead of him in central midfield. Bergeroo also neglected him, and he was close to leaving the club in the summer of 2003 when Halilhodzic arrived as Manager and gave him (albeit temporarily) a fresh start in the First Team, with 23 appearances. Frustrated with his time in Rennes, he left to join Nice in June 2003.