Yellow and Green. That’s how people dress on a Saturday night in Nantes when they go to the stadium, La Beaujoire.
Back in the time, the family club of Nantes was a top club in the French League, and was famous for its one-touch football, particularly under Coco Suaudeau. Great in C1, massive in D1. In the 90’s, you could often meet players like Didier Deschamps, Claude Makélélé, or Serge Le Dizet at the bakery... Legendary era.
But time has changed. 2007, after 44 years at the top, the club was relegated to the Second Division. This was a tragedy for every football lover. Nantes FC then started a transformation and rebuilt a strong new team. It took time. The club finally reached the First Division at the beginning of the 2010’s, and fights now to get to the Top 10.
Passion came back. The youngest found their new heroes among Emiliano Sala, Papy Djilobodji, Valentin Rongier or Diego Carlos. One of the craziest atmosphere in French football happens at La Beaujoire, where the whole grandstand sings. The Brigade Loire, main group of Nantes supporters founded in 1999, understood the potential of this stand of 7,000 people. And many of them get behind the team for away games (with a few extras in Rennes or Bordeaux). The songs are picked up in unison and the goals celebrated with spectacular descents down the tribune. Even fans of other clubs recognize the strong fervor of the Nantes people.
Dortmund’s « Yellow Wall » is definitely not the only one...
Photos from January 2019, Emiliano Sala’s last game at La Beaujoire (Nantes - Rennes). The last one a few weeks after its passing.
Text & Photos : @pierretripont_officiel