New head coach of CF Montreal | Wilfried Nancy: “I think I ticked several boxes”

“You don’t always have to look very far to find quality. ”

CF Montreal sports director Olivier Renard only took ten days to make up for Thierry Henry’s departure. And he will have done it in his own backyard, although a large number of them knocked on the door, he said Monday by videoconference with the media.

No more than five of them were, however, “possible candidates”.

“Wilfried [Nancy] was there from the start. Did he have the best papers to be a coach? No. Because everyone knows he doesn’t have the experience of being a head coach, but maybe that was the only small downside. And the luck we have in this choice is that he is a child of the club and we know exactly his qualities, ”explained Renard.

The two have gotten to know each other since last year. Over the course of the discussions, they realized that they were on the same wavelength in several respects.

“I think I ticked several boxes, so it just happened naturally,” Nancy said.

Renard had stressed the importance of continuity in the choice of Henry’s successor. In that sense, Nancy’s appointment makes sense.

Especially since one of the greatest qualities of the latter is his communication with young people, underlined Olivier Renard. And we know that the club’s workforce has considerably rejuvenated in recent months.

It was not the circumstances that made us choose Wil. We are sure. We feel he is mature.

Olivier Renard, sports director of CF Montreal

Unsurprisingly, Renard did not want to name the other potential candidates. Some are currently affiliated with a club, he explained.

“There were important names who could have signed here,” he nevertheless indicated. But we didn’t ask ourselves the question internally if we needed someone with the same philosophy, but also with a big name. ”

Some candidates came from Europe, others from North America. But at the end of the day, Nancy has always been at the top of the list.

“In the construction of the house, the first bricks were laid and he was one of the people who started to put up this wall,” Renard said. So, we want to continue with him. ”

Not the knife to my throat

The new head coach has made no secret that he would have been disappointed if he hadn’t been chosen, but he still wouldn’t have left.

“It’s football. Today is me, tomorrow it will be someone else. If it hadn’t been me, it wouldn’t have been the end of the world, ”he said.

At 43, Nancy therefore takes the reins as he begins his sixth season with the club. However, he will do so with only a one-year contract with options, Renard said.

” Why ? It’s a new thing for him, and for us too to see him in a different position. But what you need to know, and this is important, is that he absolutely does not have a knife to his throat to achieve results immediately, assured the sporting director. On my side, there is no deadline or duty to make the playoffs. Obviously, we want to do them, he wants to do them too, but there is no pressure. ”

Of course there were negotiations. But after reflection, I put myself in the shoes of the club and I understand why it gave me a year. It is not a problem for me.

Wilfried Nancy

The native Frenchman wants to continue the work in progress. Build a dynamic and proactive team. Work on the development of young people, which he has done a lot in the past, he who considers himself a “trainer coach”.

He is also delighted to have a young workforce that will give him “more flexibility”.

As for the composition of his staff, he is comfortable for the moment, but does not rule out an addition possibly, after analysis.

“The essential quality of an assistant is to be able to confront the coach with respect so that the latter can make the best possible decision,” he noted.

Assistant coaches Kwame Ampadu and Laurent Ciman, as well as goalkeeper coach Rémy Vercoutre and physical trainer Jules Gueguen are his staff for now.

Hired by Leduc

As a player, Nancy did not know the career of a Thierry Henry. Which quickly made him lucid about what to do next for him.

“Because I didn’t have such a career, I was able to recognize that coaching would be my future. I am ready and very happy. ”

After her career as a player, from 1995 to 2005, Nancy therefore goes to the sidelines. Two years at the AAA level, then in 2008, he was hired by Patrick Leduc – now director of the CF Montreal Academy – to support him at the South Shore Regional Soccer Association, of which he was then. the technical director.

“I met him when I hired him,” says Leduc. It happened very quickly. I needed someone and I immediately got a really good feeling in the conversations we had. We spoke the same language, we got along very well on the game model we wanted to develop. ”

Nancy will first take care of sports studies and the regional team, before becoming deputy technical director shortly after.

In 2011, he joined the Impact Academy, then joined the big club as an assistant coach in 2016.

So five years of coaching before joining the Impact organization, followed by five at the Academy, then five more as an assistant in MLS. From one five-year cycle to another, Wilfried Nancy is now at the helm of the first club.

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