Facing the press this Saturday, Olivier Pantaloni, the coach of AC Ajaccio, put an end to the debate on the Algerian Youcef Belaïli.
Late income from selection early April, then suspected of having a new stroke of blood in training in the process, the Algerian international Youcef Belaïli (44 caps, 9 goals) has been talked about a lot in recent weeks. For his part, Olivier Pantaloni had decided not to call up the 31-year-old winger (6 goals, 5 assists in 22 appearances), for the trip to Strasbourg, as part of the 31e Ligue 1 day (3-1).
While the divorce seemed consummated between the two parties, the former Stade Brestois spoke on social networks to deflate the controversy. “For people who want to know why I didn’t play the match (against Strasbourg on April 16, editor’s note), it’s because I’m still injured. I’m back next week”he said on his official Instagram account.
“There has never been a Belaïli story”
A version corroborated by Olivier Pantaloni at a pre-match press conference, this Saturday April 22, on the eve of hosting Brest for the 32e Ligue 1 day. ” Yes. There was never a Belaïli story, if that’s what you’re talking about. Yes, he came back late from selection, but he got injuredconfirmed the coach of the Corsicans who does not question the professionalism of his player. As long as the players show goodwill in training, I count on them. Youssef is one of those players. »
– Stade Brestois 29 (@SB29) April 21, 2023
The defeat in Strasbourg will have been fatal to the Ajacciens. While they had a tiny hope of saving themselves from relegation, the residents of the François-Coty stadium are practically condemned to the descent into Ligue 2 at the end of the season.