For Foot11, the former striker, Fabrice Pancrate, recounts the first steps at FC Nantes of Jordan Veretout in the professional world in 2011 and judges his evolution. More
Jordan Veretout will return to Ligue 1 in Marseille. The 29-year-old international midfielder played for FC Nantes and AS Saint-Etienne. A parenthesis in England at Aston Villa before flying to Italy. In 2017 he signed for Fiorentina and in 2019 he joined Roma. He won the Europa League Conference this season with the Louve club. Fabrice Pancrate, with whom he played in Nantes, tells us more about the new recruit from Marseille.
What memories do you keep of Jordan Veretout that you met in Nantes?
“Jordan is a good player above all. An endearing and very jovial person. He is a player who also had to be framed from a lifestyle point of view. He was young and carefree. At his age, you tend to do everything young people did. He was enjoying life while playing football and performing well. He had to realize that it was his job. Jordan would have been twice as efficient, if he had put himself in a living environment. It came with time. He met his wife and then had a child. It balanced things out.”
“It was difficult for him in England. Today, he found what suited him best in Italy. Indeed, we see the full extent of his talent, whether at Fiorentina where he played and at Roma. He is someone who knew the France team thanks to his high level performances. It is a just reward for him. Jordan is a good guy.
What were his qualities at Nantes when he played with you?
“He had a big volume of play, but also a big physical capacity. He was very rarely out of breath and had a big VMA. Jordan was able to make the effort both offensively and defensively. Thus, to make the relay between the defense and the attack. Veretout was able to make assists, also score and finished on free kicks. All his qualities have made him an accomplished and high-level player.
A word on its evolution until an arrival in Marseille?
“It’s weird that you’re talking to me about this because I was watching the football news yesterday, because I’m in the middle of it. I came across his news about him and Marseille. As well as the controversy which generates the possible departure in Marseille of Jordan Veretout. Regarding the qualities he has and his potential, this can be an added value for a club like Marseille. Jordan played at a very high level with Roma in the Champions League and the Europa League Conference. He can be a very good element for Marseille. Marseille is a very special context, not everyone can play there. We have seen it in the past with certain examples”.
“I wanted to call him and I would give him three little pieces of advice. However, I am not in his place. The Marseille context is difficult. When you win, you are a God. When you lose, you’re nothing. This is the case in the big clubs, I want to tell you. For the club, it is a good asset. Marseille remains one of our leaders in our championship”.
“We don’t talk to each other every day. But sometimes, I send a message by WhatsApp and we exchange. I congratulate him on his performance. Sometimes I call her for something else. Indeed, I am also a sports adviser. When you have players in clubs including his, you are in contact with the sporting director. I don’t call him regularly like other players in his squad, but I can get him online once a month or once every two months.
On what aspects has he progressed?
“In consistency, he progressed. Jordan is very consistent. He happened to be good in one match and less good in another. Then, to be average in another match and finally to be good again. When you have a family, you prepare your matches differently than when you are young. There is the fatigue that arrives and which is not the same when you are 20 years old than now at 28-29 years old. Veretout takes a lot of initiatives and the game on its own. He is less shy. In a club like Roma, the free kicks, it’s him who shoots. The penalties, it is he who shoots. For a French player to win in a club like Roma and in an Italian context, that’s good. Jordan also scores a lot more than before.”