Why Attackers Work Less in France: Jean-Pierre Papin’s Analysis
In an interview on RMC’s “Rothen s’igne” show, former footballer Jean-Pierre Papin delved into the growing trend of French clubs sparing attackers from rigorous training sessions. He highlighted the need for attackers to constantly refine their skills and expressed concern over the decline in specific training.
Papin emphasized, “In France, it is not our custom to make specifics.” He recalled his own experience as a striker, stating, “Attackers are like goalkeepers: if we don’t review our ranges every day, we lose our bearings.” He reminisced about the joy he found in daily training sessions, where he would practice shooting for forty minutes, taking around 200 shots without any injuries.
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“The Coach Doesn’t Understand the Needs of Attackers”
Having transitioned from player to coach, Jean-Pierre Papin understands the excuses often used by coaches to justify the reduction in individual training for attackers, such as fatigue or fear of injuries. However, he never refused to provide specific training because he believed it was crucial for the players’ development.
Papin dismissed the notion that the new generation of scorers lacks passion or work ethic. He explained, “There are some who want to do it, but the coach is closed to him, he wants to do it himself (the specific). Which I can understand. But what the coach doesn’t understand is that we, as attackers, need it mentally, physically, and in our everyday movements. It’s not about strength, but about precision so that our foot finds the right angle.”
Romain Daveau Journalist RMC Sport