Round of 32
Having failed in the first round of the play-offs to obtain promotion to Division 1 against Nîmes in May 1989, Stade Rennais, managed by Raymond Kéruzoré bolstered his squad signing players from his local rivals: Milton (Laval), Sorin (Brest) and Ribar (Quimper). The only major departure of note was the Hungarian international Garaba. Neck-and-neck with Le Havre at the halfway point of the season, the Red and Blacks stuttered somewhat in February, despite the success of their prolific strike partners Erik Van Den Boogaard and Laurent Delamontagne, and the interesting distraction of the French Cup, where they were knocked out in the last 32 match at Metz after penalty shoot-out (1-1, 2-4 on pens). Before the last game of the season, Rennes are leaders of Group B, and just behind Valenciennes in terms of the number of goals scored. A win was vital in their final match at Lorient, needing to score more than the team from the North of France, who were away at Angers. After François Denis opened the score at the Moustoir Stadium in Lorient, the rest of the game became breathless. Valenciennes, meanwhile, were leading by the same score in Angers (1-0). Finally, Cano’s last-gasp goal ended the suspense, enabling Rennes to return to the First Division. After the celebrations had subsided, there was still the small matter of the Champions Match against Nancy, which Rennes subsequently lost, 0-2 on aggregate.