Julien Sablé has known everything with the Greens. Player, captain, assistant, interim coach, Sablé is not lacking in anecdotes. He was the guest of Farid Rouas in 100% Foot.
Julien Sable: “The pain of leaving Saint-Etienne and experiencing relegation is something that will remain engraved. But it is part of the experience and it allows me to learn another side of the coaching profession.
To be honest, I was hoping to be able to bounce back very quickly. I left Saint-Etienne by mutual agreement. My agent, whose name is Jean-Pierre Bernès, taught me something essential. Either you work or you don’t work when you’re a coach. But there are more who do not work. Seats are expensive. So that’s part of that job. Today is a calmer period. June was warmer but the teams have since resumed.
“The ultimate goal is to be number 1”
These are certainly the best times for coaches and staff because you don’t have the results that count. You can prepare with your game patterns and ideas. There I am in the perspective of waiting a few weeks or months to find a project. The ultimate goal is to be number 1. That’s my goal.
I know that my career must last 30 years or more. I still have a lot to learn. I had opportunities to continue as an assistant but they did not find a solution. It is really a difficult and very precarious job. I have a lot of respect for my corporation. Some don’t have a job, like me, but for much longer.
“I have no regrets”
My conversion happened naturally. I was going to be 34 years old. I was not programmed to be a professional player. I realized my dream. I had no ambition to become a coach at the start. As a player I had known 5 months of unemployment before Bastia. When my contract ended in Bastia, I knew that I had to be an actor in my career. I knew for a long time that I wanted to be an educator and coach. Since I was 24-25 years old. I had some limitations as a player that make you think. I quickly had a reflection on the game. I developed that.
I had the opportunity to return to Saint-Etienne, to pass all my diplomas quickly. I jumped at the chance. I have no regrets.
I succeeded in my conversion. I succeeded in obtaining all the diplomas of the Fédé. I had a lot of chances that it could happen. I met wonderful people. These first diplomas were exceptional to pass. Now I have set myself other dreams.
“With hindsight, of course we should have declined”
You have to put it in context. For me I was not number 1, I did an interim. The way it was done…I went there with no questions asked. In hindsight I would say no. If you correctly diagnose the situation of the team, the environment, it’s just a textbook case where you shouldn’t do it. A diminished team that is physically in tatters. With a lack of talent. With ambitions that are very high. There is everything not to do it.
With hindsight, of course it should have declined. But the experience of Saint-Etienne allowed me to pass my diplomas, to meet great coaches, to become an assistant, to train very great players. Then to experience good or bad emotions… I live my life to experience emotions.
The choice to accept this interim was positive for me. Failure is part of learning. I don’t regret at all. Then I had a bullet in the foot. And it was painful to live. Even more in his club. But it allowed me to learn about myself and about people.
“The confidence of a player like that of a number 1 is worth gold”
I was second assistant then assistant number 1. At the start I met a lot of guys with whom I had played. I had a privileged relationship that allowed me to still be a teammate. The assistant position is very complicated. You have your number 1. And you’re in a situation where you’re wondering what are you bringing back to number 1. What are you bringing back to the players.
It is a very dangerous balancing act. I gave the best of myself. I had very privileged relations in particular with Wahbi (Khazri). I played with Ryad Boudebouz, Loïc Perrin. The Yann MVila, Remy Cabella we had played against. I have always been very careful. The confidence of a player like that of a number 1 is worth gold.
Also read: First date for Nedder and his men today!