Strasbourg becomes the latest fretful Ligue 1 club to sack their manager. Having won the Coupe de la Ligue in 2005, the club was either promoted or relegated in four of the next five seasons before dropping down to the sprawling fifth tier in 2011 due to financial issues. However, they earned promotion in four of the next six seasons and were back in Ligue 1 by 2017, before winning the Coupe de la Ligue again in 2019.
Strasbourg become the latest fretful Ligue 1 club to sack their manager
After a few seasons in the lower reaches of mid-table, the arrival of manager Julien Stéphan at the start of last season seemed to herald a sea change. The young, vibrant coach, who was fresh from winning the Coupe de France with Rennes, took the same players used by his wily but often pragmatic predecessor Thierry Lauray and turned Strasbourg into a functional but attacking outfit.
The rate of sackings can be partly attributed to a heightened fear of relegation. Four teams are going down this season. As a result, in a fiercely competitive division, more than half of the 20 clubs went into the campaign weary of relegation. Clubs know that, with Ligue 2 also decreasing in size from 20 to 18 teams from the 2024–25 season, not only is dropping down more likely but returning to the top flight would be even more challenging. St-Étienne’s struggles – they are at the foot of the second tier after being relegated from Ligue 1 last season – will not have gone unnoticed by club presidents.