Wednesday, April 13, 2011
France April 2011
This was a Eurostar and train trip to Northern France taking in the Brittany derby between Brest and Rennes.
Vannes in front.
Boulogne 0 Vannes 1.
After a Grimbergen I strolled around the ramparts before joining the 9,000+ fans (though it looked a few thousand less than that figure)
The stadium is a patchwork of temporary looking and more permanent stands with the local ultras in the left hand end.
The winner was headed in by Diguiny half way through the first half.
Though the home side made some second period changes it didn’t make much difference as Vannes general looked in control and continued to be dangerous from breakaways.
Palbennec 0 Bastia 3.
This was a 3rd level match between league leaders Bastia and Plabennec.
Plabennec is a small town close to Brest and I got to the game about fifteen minutes before the start after a long train ride from Boulogne via Paris.
The ground has one elevated stand which was well populated on a sunny Saturday afternoon.
There is a bar behind one goal and a semi-temporary stand for the away fans to the left hand end in which Bastia had about 40 supporters.
Though both teams hit the woodwork early on the result was never in doubt as Bastia were a class above their opponents.
They stay on track for promotion.
I took the bus back to Brest and had a kebab panini in the logically named ‘Brest Food’ takeaway.
Brest 2 Rennes 0.
This derby was a local triumph for the home side who were well up for this match against their 3rd placed Ligue 1 rivals.
Everyone waved their flags (I gave mine away) to create a decent atmosphere in the 15,000 crowd.
Rennes brought their ultras, many of whom I saw before the game around the Place de Strasbourg.
But they would go home disappointed as Brest were the better team, especially in midfield, allowing the visitors few opportunities.
Nathan Roux fired in an inspiring 30 yarder for the first and the excellent Grougi got the second to seal the win.
At the end the home side, and their fans, could enjoy a well earned win.
I had a brisk walk back to the centre as the car horns sounded.
more pictures at http://www.photobox.co.uk/album/738523004