|Full name||Football Club de Metz|
|Nickname(s)||Les Grenats, Les Graoullys|
|2013-14||Ligue 2, 1st (promoted)|
|Website||Club home page|
Football Club de Metz, commonly referred to as simply Metz (French pronunciation: [mes]), is a French association football club based in Metz. The club was formed in 1932 and has spent most of its history in Ligue 1, except for a stint in Ligue 2 (the second level in the French football league system) between 2008 and 2014, which also encompassed a relegation to the National Championship in 2012. In April 2014, Metz secured its spot back in Ligue 1 by defeating Auxerre. Metz plays its home matches at the Stade Municipal Saint-Symphorien located within the city. The team is managed by former FC Metz player Albert Cartier.
FC Metz was founded in 1932 by the amalgamation of two amateur athletic clubs, and shortly thereafter became a professional team; it is one of the oldest professional football teams in France. Its roots trace back further, to the SpVgg Metz club, formed in 1905 when the city of Metz was part of the German Empire. SpVgg played in the tier-one Westkreis-Liga for a season in 1913–14, before the outbreak of the First World War stopped all play. Some players of this club were part of the Cercle Athlétique Messin in 1919, which went on to become FC Metz in 1932. Messin was a leading club in the Division d'Honneur – Lorraine, taking out league titles in 1920, 1921, 1922, 1924, 1926, 1927, 1929 and 1931.
The club played in the French second division north from 1933, winning the league in 1935 and earning promotion to Ligue 1 for the first time. The team became a mid-table side in the first division until the outbreak of the war interfered with play once more. FCM did not take part in the top-tier regional competitions in 1939–40.
During the 2nd World War, the Moselle département being annexed by Germany, the club had to play under the Germanised name of FV Metz in the Gauliga Westmark. In the three completed seasons of this league from 1941 to 1944, the club finished runners-up each year.
Despite the city of Metz being retaken by allied forces in autumn 1944, the club did not take part in French league football in 1944–45 but returned to Ligue 1 in 1945–46, to come 17th out of 18 clubs. An expansion of the league to 20 clubs meant, the team was not relegated and stayed at the highest level until 1950, when a last place finish ended its Ligue 1 membership.
The club rebounded immediately, finishing second in Ligue 2, behind Olympique Lyon and returned to the first division. FC Metz made a strong return to this league, finishing fifth in its first season back. After this, the club once more had to battle against relegation season-by-season, finishing second-last in 1958 and having to return to Ligue 2. It took three seasons in this league before it could manage to return to Ligue 1 in 1961, but lasted for only one year in the top flight. FC Metz spent the next five seasons at second division level.
FC Metz ascended to the top level of French football once more in 1967; the team remained in the highest division until they were relegated in 2001, although they bounced back immediately and returned to the Ligue 1 the following year. In 2006 they were relegated again. In 1998 the team competed in the qualifications to the Uefa Champions League but lost in the third round to Finnish team HJK Helsinki. Finally Metz once finished 18th of Ligue 2 and relegated to National, third tier of French football after 1–1 draw with FC Tours at home match in 20 May 2012.
FC Metz plays its home matches at the stade Saint-Symphorien, which has a capacity of 26,700. Its official colours are grenat (maroon) and white, from which the team derives its nickname Les Grenats. The team's crest features the Lorraine cross, symbolic of the team's regional affiliation, and the dragon called the Graoully, which in local legend was tamed by Saint Clement of Metz.
FC Metz also gained recognition in France and Europe for its successful youth academy, which produced star players including: Rigobert Song, Robert Pirès, Louis Saha, Emmanuel Adebayor, Papiss Cissé, Miralem Pjanić, Kalidou Koulibaly, and Sadio Mané.
As of 21 July, 2014 Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Below are the notable former players who have represented Metz in league and international competition since the club's foundation in 1932. To appear in the section below, a player must have played at least a full season for the club.
For a complete list of FC Metz players, see Category:FC Metz players
Current technical staff
|Head Coach||Albert Cartier|
- George Kimpton (?-?)
- Ted Maghner (1937–38)
- Paul Thomas (1938–39)
- Peter Fabian (1940–41)
- Charles Fosset (1944–45)
- Bep Bakhuys (1945–46)
- François Odry (1946)
- Ted Maghner (1946–47)
- Nicolas Hibst (1947)
- Charles Fosset (1947–49)
- Oscar Saggiero (1949–50)
- Ignace Kowalczyk (1950)
- Emile Veinante (1950–51)
- Elie Rous (1951–52)
- Emile Rummelhardt (1952–55)
- André Watrin (1955)
- Jacques Favre (1955–58)
- Marcel Tomazover (1958)
- Désiré Koranyi (1958–59)
- Robert Lacoste (1959)
- Jules Nagy (1959–63)
- Jacques Favre (1963–66)
- Max Schirschin (1966–67)
- Max Schirschin and René Fuchs (1967–68)
- Pierre Flamion (1968–70)
- René Fuchs (1970–71)
- Jacques Favre and Robert Zvunka (1971–72)
- René Vernier (1972–75)
- Georges Huart (1975–78)
- Marc Rastoll (1978–79)
- Marc Rastoll and Jean Snella (1979–80)
- Henryk Kasperczak (1980–84)
- Marcel Husson (1984–89)
- Henri Depireux (1989 – December 89)
- Joël Muller (December 1989 – December 2000)
- Albert Cartier (December 2000 – 2 January)
- Francis De Taddeo (January 2002)
- Gilbert Gress (January 2002-02)
- Jean Fernandez (2002–05)
- Joël Muller (2005–06)
- Francis De Taddeo (2006–07)
- Yvon Pouliquen (2007–10)
- Joël Muller (2010)
- Dominique Bijotat (2010–2012)
- Albert Cartier (2012–present)
FC Metz has never won the French championship; its best result was a second-place finish in 1998, behind RC Lens. Metz won the Coupe de France twice, in 1984 and 1988, the first of these victories enabled it to qualify for the European Cup Winners' Cup where it achieved arguably the team's greatest moment, an upset of FC Barcelona in the first round of the competition in October 1984. It lost 4–2 at home in the first leg but won 4–1 away in the return leg, thus qualifying 6–5 on aggregate. FC Metz also won the Coupe de la Ligue twice, in 1986 and 1996, and has made a total of ten appearances in European tournaments.
- Ligue 1
- Runners-up (1): 1997–98
- Ligue 2
- Coupe de France
- Coupe de la Ligue
- France – Division d'Honneur – Lorraine 1919–1932 RSSSF.com, accessed: 17 May 2009
- France – List of Final Tables Second Level RSSSF.com, accessed: 17 May 2009
- France – First Division Results and Tables 1932–1998 RSSSF.com, accessed: 17 May 2009
- French clubs in the German football structure 1940–1944 RSSSF.com, accessed: 31 May 2008
- The Graoully, symbol of Metz
- France – Trainers of First and Second Division Clubs
- (French) Official website