Martin Terrier : « I have great confidence in this group »

By dint of hard work, a succession of games and patience, Martin Terrier has got closer to the physical level he was at before his knee injury. He will be a major asset in the last four matches of the 2023/2024 season. 

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Martin, you shouldn't have missed the derby in Nantes...
For our ranking, we had to take these three points, there was a certain pressure. We're used to saying that you don't play a derby, you win a derby. On the whole, we put in a good performance, especially in the second half. The first goal was good for our confidence. It bodes well for Sunday's game.

We'll need to build on that attacking confidence on Sunday...
When you score one goal after another, you feel like you're creating chances with ease. On the other hand, when you score fewer goals, you have the impression that the goal is smaller. The most important thing is to keep the confidence of our partners and keep trying. Just because we're less successful doesn't mean we have to hide. 

Do you feel that you no longer have the right to make mistakes when it comes to achieving your goals? 
Our fate is in our own hands. We'll be playing head-to-head for the European places. There are four finals left, and the aim is to pick up as many points as possible.

« Continuing to grow the club »

You've been at Rennes for four years now, and you know what it's like at the end of the season when you have to set your sights high.
It often comes down to the last four or five games, that's true. These are difficult periods but we've managed them pretty well before. These are times when you have to manage your emotions. We've had a good few weeks of training, so we need to stay positive and not have any doubts. We have a chance of finishing in Europe, and the aim is to continue to help this club grow and raise its profile. 

Do you think the reduction of the league to 18 teams this season has changed anything? 
I have the impression that there are fewer differences between the teams. Before, we used to have a top 5 or top 6, but now we have a top 10 fighting for Europe. It's very close, which makes it even more competitive.  


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You've been in several dressing rooms and with several groups at SRFC. What are his skills? 
I observe a lot and I see that in training they respond very positively. You have to be able to reproduce in matches what you do during the week, that's the hardest part. I have great confidence in this group. We've scored fewer goals this season, but the danger can come from anywhere. We're always looking to capitalise on our good times. 

How do you feel on the pitch? 
It's a bit complicated to answer, to know whether I'm 100% or not. When you've had an injury like that, you have to be patient. It's often said that you have to wait for the same number of months that you've been out, and then add it on after you've started playing again, so that you can get back to full fitness. I'm feeling good, my knee doesn't feel bad any more. I'm working hard in addition to training, and I know it's going to pay off.

A Martin Terrier on form is something you can see quite quickly in a match, are you wrong or not?  
That's what my friends and family tell me, often on my first touch of the ball. You can tell from the first ball whether I'm on form or not. But just because I didn't get the ball right the first time doesn't necessarily mean that the rest of the match won't be as good. The hardest thing is to maintain the same level of concentration and intensity.

« It would be a lie to say that I don't need others »

Are you even more aware of the level you were at a year and a half ago? 
There are a lot of things that come into play. If we're talking purely in terms of performance, I think I was at an exceptional level. There's a difference in terms of statistics, but you also have to take into account the way the team plays, because I'm a team player. It would be a lie to say that I don't need the others, and conversely I can put my team-mates in good conditions. At the moment, I feel in really good shape. I feel it in training, my legs are responding really well. That gives me the opportunity to pay tribute to the work of the staff, and in particular Guillaume Testu (editor's note: reathletiser) who has been with me from start to finish for ten months, almost seven days a week. I'm also thinking of the medical staff, the physical trainers, the family and friends for their support. 

8 goals and 3 assists is not too bad for a player returning from a long injury.
For a transitional season, it's promising, and satisfying all the same to say to myself that I didn't do all this for nothing, even if I'm not content with that. It's good for a transitional season. Beyond the statistics, what's interesting is that I'm recovering physical abilities that are similar to my own. 

Were the eight games in February hard to take?
It was the most difficult month. I hadn't had such a succession of games since my return as a first-team regular. It was very draining but that's part of the process. If it can help me get into a rhythm and finish the last four games in the best possible way.

« A top-class team that richly deserves its place »

How would you describe Brest's progress this season? 
They remind me of Lens last season. It's a bit of a surprise, because hardly anyone thought Brest would do so well this season. When you look at the content of their games, you can see that they're a top-class team who richly deserve their place. They're a great team to watch and I enjoy watching their games. They're not a team that waits and counters. It's open, it scores goals, it takes risks. When the ball comes out from the back, it's not necessarily direct play, they try to come out clean, it's beautiful football. There are other surprises in other leagues too: Girona, who can still play in the Champions League because they're third in La Liga, Bologna in Italy, Leverkusen in Germany and champions, that's the beauty of football.


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With a few players you know well...
Of course, I know former Rennes players Romain Del Castillo and Lilian Brassier very well. I often played against the other players. And I met Jonas Martin at Strasbourg, he was like my big brother. It was my professional debut and he already had a lot of experience. He advised me and we had a very close relationship. Then our paths diverged and we ended up in Rennes. It was great to be able to play together again. They have good partnerships at Brest, with Pierre Lees-Melou, Hugo Magnetti, Kamory Doumbia... Kenny Lala and Romain Del Castillo also work well together. 

Rarely has an SRFC/Brest derby been so exciting to watch...
It's still a derby but there's no doubt that when you look at the standings of the two teams and what's at stake in this match, it could make for a great encounter. 

And it will be the penultimate match of the season at Roazhon Park...
The end of the season is always special. We have to make the most of these moments at home, but above all I hope there'll be a win for us.

Matchday 31 - Ligue 1 Uber Eats 
Stade Rennais F.C. v Stade Brestois 29
Sunday 28 April 2024 - 5.05pm CET
Roazhon Park