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Chris Coleman french connection OK

last updated Friday 31st October 2003, 12:52 PM
Fulham Manager Chris Coleman
Fulham Manager
Chris Coleman
Fulham's French players, were called the "Tigana boys" after the London club's former coach who hired them, now say they are now even closer to his replacement Chris Coleman.

"Last year, there were lots of problems at the club which disturbed the team and and life within the squad," striker Louis Saha told sports daily L'Equipe.

"The finger of blame was pointed at us, the Tigana boys. We were not a very close squad.

"As soon as Chris took over, the squad had a soul again," he added.

Former Fulham captain Coleman replaced Tigana in April and brought back some motivation within the squad, a recovery which climaxed last week when they won 3-1 at Manchester United. The club are now fifth in the league.

"We took enormous pleasure at Old Trafford," said experienced defender Jerome Bonnissel, who also thanked Coleman for the victory.

"Coleman is a young manager who knows all the tricks," he said.

Saha, who struggled last season after a fine Premier League debut, is back almost at his best this season with five goals in nine games.

"Everybody agrees with the coach's speech. The biggest difference with Tigana is feeling. Coleman listens to us players. He's like another team-mate, only he's on the bench," Saha said.

Former French international Martin Djetou shared the views.

"The atmosphere is much healthier this season. The English press promised us hell and relegation at the start of the season. It also helped make us progress. It was a motivation," he said.
Source Guardian
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