Skip to content

Portrait: Bafodé Diakité, a “pitchoun” arrives in the North

He is the 7th recruit of the Lille transfer window: Bafodé Diakité, at the age of 21, leaves his native Toulouse for LOSC. Le Petit Lillois offers you a zoom on the one who will strengthen the defense of the Mastiffs next season.

A pure Toulousain

Born on January 6, 2001 in Toulouse, Bafodé Diakité took his first steps in the Reynerie district and started playing football with the Toulouse Athletic Club at the age of 7. On the side of the TAC, his former educator Fayçal Gacem remembered for The Dispatch one year ago ” of a very nice boy. A little-big boy, already. In U11, before and after training, he picked up the children who were 9 or 10 years old, and took them home, just behind the bridge. He was already a little daddy. A serious, determined boy, aware of his potential “. Already at the time, Bafodé Diakité impressed with his talent and inspired fear in his young opponents in the region.

At 12, he joined the city’s big club, Toulouse FC, and continued his training there. Regularly outclassed, the training central defender asserts himself as a promising element of the Toulouse training center. He knows all the French youth teams. His rise to the professional world seems all mapped out, when an unexpected event is about to rock his young career. At the age of 16, during a gathering in Blue, the doctors detected a heart anomaly in him.

This news halted his progress and kept him away from the field for more than eight months. There is even talk of a premature end to his football career for the young player. But there is no question of stopping high-level football for “Bafo'”. The defender fights back and comes back stronger when doctors give him the green light to resume. He rejoins the U17 team and is about to change dimension in the months that follow.

The discovery of the high level with his training club

In 2017, the young Franco-Guinean defender signed his first professional contract at the age of 17. He is the first player launched as a pro of a golden 2001 generation for the Violets, made up of Amine Adli, Manu Koné, Janis Antiste and Anthony Rouault. Bafodé Diakité knows his first appearances within the professional group. For everyday The DispatchIssou Dao, former assistant to Toulouse coach Alain Casanova at the time, returned in 2021 to the qualities of the defender trained at Téfécé: “ He was monstrous, but there was something else. He has this cold blood, he does not panic, does not scatter in his concentration. He was extremely mature for his age, especially in that position. »

At the end of 2018, Bafodé Diakité is seeking a starting spot for the first time in the first team, against Reims. In 2019, he gradually gained strength and asserted himself as an element of choice in the rotation of the Toulouse club, knowing nine tenures in the league over the first six months of the year. Fully integrated into the professional group, he decided to go back down with the youngsters to try to win the Gambardella Cup, only to lose in the final after a good run.

In 2019-2020, he definitely becomes a starter in the central defense of the Violets. His ability to break the lines and his calm – qualities that will surely please Paulo Fonseca – make him an observed element of the Aquitaine team. But his team, not really armed to fight for anything other than maintaining Ligue 1, is taking on water in the league. Except for a victory against LOSC two goals to one in October 2019, Téfécé will no longer know the victory of the season. After the cessation of competitions, Toulouse, dead last in Ligue 1, descends to the lower level.

A real Swiss army knife for his coaches

In the summer of 2020, there is talk for Bafodé Diakité to leave his training club. Yohan Lemaire, journalist passed by The Dispatch and Noon Olympicbelieves that the Franco-Guinean should have left Téfécé at the time of the descent: “ A lot of people thought he would leave in relegation, but in the end he stayed. Personally, I think he should have left, because staying there did him a little disservice. As a youngster with huge potential, he began to stagnate and slip back in the rotation. »

In Ligue 2, the Pitchoun remains a reliable element of the Toulouse team, and is tried in several positions in the defense, in the central hinge as well as in the right side. At the end of the 2020-2021 season, the site My League 2 places him in his eleven of revelations, alongside Ismaël Doukouré, a time mentioned close to LOSC and gone to Strasbourg this winter, but also the former Lille Scotty Sadzoute and the neo-Dogue Mohamed Bayo.

Last season, Bafodé Diakité discovered the left side of the defense this time to make up for the absence of Issiaga Sylla, who had gone to CAN. These regular job changes do not help him exploit his full potential: ” On the pitch, the last two years have not been easy and he hasn’t changed much. But he has something and it’s not for nothing that rumors had sent him to the side of Lyon adds Yohan. After bringing his club back to the top flight, Bafodé Diakité therefore set sail for the North and left his cocoon in Toulouse for the first time in his career.

In addition to a profile of a promising young player and a versatile defender useful to Lille’s defense, Bafodé Diakité perfectly embodies the profile sought by Lille leaders during this transfer window. His mentality has been praised since a very young age and his mood-setting character will no doubt adapt to the LOSC squad. The final word for Yohan: “ He’s a guy who never gives up, with a great state of mind. He is loved by absolutely all the supporters, he was a kind of link between the supporters, the group, the club and the city. He was all of these. He’ll come back, I’m sure. He will leave the Toulouse framework and therefore discover new working methods. He is young but with experience and, in my opinion, he can still improve a lot. »


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.