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How do you convince a player to sign? / Ligue 2 / Live my DS life / Episode 8 / SOFOOT.com

Until September 1, the transfer window will punctuate the life of clubs in France. Beyond the wild rumours, fabulous offers and fan fantasies, there is a reality that leaders of Ligue 2 teams have agreed to tell us about throughout the summer. This Friday, Frédéric Hébert, sports director of Paris FC, describes his method of convincing a player to commit to his training.


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  • Make the player feel that we know him better than himself

    “At Paris FC, we do not manage files in an emergency. The transfer window is worked well in advance, which means that there are long discussions, for several months, with the targeted player. If he shows interest, we organize a tour of the facilities. This is all the more important as our training center (based in Orly, editor’s note) is now of quality, worthy of a Ligue 1 club. Then, the process is very clear. I receive the player in my office and we talk for two hours. I tell him how we perceive him, relying on a scouting report, to expose its strong points, its weak points, and a lot of other elements that I can’t tell you too much about. To illustrate my point, I also show him a video compiling some of his actions. The crucial issue here is to make him understand that we know him very well, as a footballer and as a person. For this, we do not hesitate to submit motor preference exercises, which allow us to know different things on the human and physical level. This is part of the elements that we put in place to convince the targeted players to join us. »

    “If we manage to raise the PFC in the elite, we know very well that it will have a French, European and even global resonance. Our global project thrills players, that’s for sure. » Frédéric Hébert, sporting director of Paris FC


  • Make the most of the club project

    “As in all negotiations, the financial aspect occupies an important place. Inevitably, our salary proposals must suit the player if we want to envisage a common future. But beyond the financial, I see that our recruits are all very interested in the club project that we are presenting to them. It must be said that this project is extremely attractive: it is a question of making Paris FC the second Parisian club in Ligue 1. It would be historic and the players are obviously sensitive to it. If we manage to raise the PFC in the elite, we know very well that it will have a French, European and even global resonance. Because the name of our club is Paris. It is an internationally recognized brand. Our global project thrills players, that’s for sure. The six players we recruited this summer were solicited by big Ligue 2 clubs, even other teams, sometimes even Ligue 1. If they chose us despite this very strong competition, it’s because we are attractive. Since I took office (January 2020, editor’s note), it happened very rarely that we were not answered favorably. Once or twice, maybe. »

    Frédéric Hébert in discussion with Thierry Laurey


  • The coach, another major asset

    “So my role is to promote this overall club project. In a way, I offer the player a medium-term projection. Then it’s the president’s turn. (Pierre Ferracci, Editor’s note) to set out his long-term vision for the club. Finally, the coach (Thierry Laurey, Editor’s note) intervenes to talk about the short term, the game project he intends to set up, the way he wants to use the potential new recruit. That is really the final step. We are lucky to have a coach used to Ligue 2, who has already come up twice (with Gazélec Ajaccio in 2015 and Strasbourg in 2017, Ed). His experience is clearly an argument that counts in the eyes of the players. It weighed in the choice of Pierre-Yves Hamel, who signed with us when he was in high demand. Anyway, we work in a collegial way, with a basic rule: the coach, the president and the sporting director must all three agree for us to try to recruit a player. If this is not the case, we don’t go any further, because we risk making a mistake. From now on, we are already planning on the transfer window which will take place in a year, to prepare for the 2023-24 season. With two scenarios: one in Ligue 2, and the other that we will activate in the event of a rise in Ligue 1…”

    Pierre-Yves Hamel, one of the Parisian summer recruits

    Interview by Raphaël Brosse
    Episode 1 : How to prepare your transfer window, with John Williams (Amiens)
    Episode 2: How to manage a climb, with Jean-Philippe Nallet (Annecy)
    Episode 3: What to do with players at the end of their contract, with Grégory Ursule (Rodez)
    Episode 4: How to properly digest a descent, with Pierre Dréossi (Metz)
    Episode 5: How are the discussions with the agents, with John Williams (Amiens)
    Episode 6: What place remains for privacy, with Grégory Ursule (Rodez)
    Episode 7: How to recruit smartly on a tight budget, with Jean-Philippe Nallet (Annecy)

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