FC Lorient

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FC Lorient logo.svg
Full name Football Club Lorient-Bretagne Sud
Nickname(s) Les Merlus, Le FCL
Founded 1926; 91 years ago (1926)
Ground Stade du Moustoir,
Ground Capacity 18,500
Chairman Loïc Fery
Manager Bernard Casoni
League Ligue 1
2015–16 Ligue 1, 15th
Website Club home page
Current season

Football Club Lorient-Bretagne Sud (French pronunciation: ​[lɔʁjɑ̃ bʁətaɲ syd]; commonly referred to FC Lorient or simply Lorient) is a French association football club based in Lorient, Brittany. The club was founded in 1926 and currently play in Ligue 1, the top level of French football. Lorient plays its home matches at the stade Yves Allainmat, former mayor of the city located within the city. The stadium is surnamed Stade du Moustoir because of his location within the city. The team is managed by Bernard Casoni.

Lorient had a relatively bleak history nationally prior to 1998 when the club made its first appearance in Ligue 1 in the 1998–99 season. Prior to that, Lorient spent the majority of its life as an amateur club. Lorient's achieved its biggest honour in 2002 when the club won the Coupe de France defeating Bastia 1–0 in the final. Lorient has never won Ligue 1, but has won the Championnat National earning this honour in 1995. Regionally, the club has won five Brittany Division d'Honneur titles and six Coupe de Bretagne.

Lorient has most notably served as a springboard club for several present-day internationals such as Laurent Koscielny, André-Pierre Gignac, Michaël Ciani, Kévin Gameiro, Karim Ziani, Bakari Koné and Seydou Keita. French international Yoann Gourcuff, the son of Christian Gourcuff, began his career at the club before moving to Derby Breton rivals Rennes. In recent years the club has developed a reputation because of its commitment to playing a spectacular brand of football and its long-standing trust in coach Christian Gourcuff, a highly regarded tactician in France in spite of his relative lack of fame abroad.[1]


Football Club Lorient was founded on 2 April 1926. Lorient was formed off of La Marée Sportive, a club founded a year earlier by Madame Cuissard, a store patron who originated from Saint-Étienne, and her son Joseph. The club began play as an amateur club under the Czechoslovakian manager Jozef Loquay and won the Champions de l'Ouest in 1929, which placed the club into the Division d'Honneur of the Brittany region. In 1932, Lorient won the league and, four years later, repeated this performance. The onset of World War II limited the club's meteoric rise in the region and the departure of several players who either joined the war effort or left to play abroad effectively disseminated the club.

Following the war, Antoine Cuissard, the grandson of Madame Cuissard, joined the club as a player with intentions of rebuilding it in honour of his grandmother. Lorient began play in the Division d'Honneur. Cuissard began one of the first Lorient players to maintain a place in the France national team while playing with the club. In 1954, he played on the team that qualified for the 1954 FIFA World Cup. Lorient quickly recovered and, by 1948, was playing in the Championnat de France amateur (CFA). The club spent two years in the league before falling back to the Division d'Honneur. In 1957, Lorient was promoted back to the CFA, but struggled due to being limited financially. Subsequently, the club sought sponsors with the hopes of becoming professional. In 1967, under the chairmanship of both Jean Tomine and René Fougère, Lorient placed a bid to turn professional and was elected to Division 2 by the French League. Incoming president Henri Ducassou agreed to do his best to make professionalism prosper in Lorient.

In the second division, Lorient struggled in the early seventies to consistently stay up in the league table. In the 1974–75 and 1975–76 seasons, the club came close to promotion to Division 1, finishing 3rd in its group on each occasion, one place short of the promotion play-offs. However, the following season, Lorient was relegated to Division 3. Ironically, the potential of that team had proved above its classification when the club qualified for its first French FA Cup quarter-finals in history. The club subsequently struggled financially and domestically. It went bankrupt in 1978. During this period, under the name "Club des Supporters du FC Lorient" (the supporters legally took over to keep the FC Lorient name alive), Lorient played in the Division Supérieure Régionale (sixth tier of the French football pyramid). In the early 1980s, Georges Guenoum took over the club as president and hired former Lorient player Christian Gourcuff as manager. Surprisingly, under Gourcuff, Lorient quickly climbed back up the French football ladder. In 1983, the club won the Brittany Division d'Honneur title and, the following season, won Division 4. In 1985, they won Division 3 and so were back in Division 2 eight years after their demise at that level! Gourcuff left the club after its first Division 2 campaign, with relegation only being effective through an unfavourable goal difference. Lorient spent the next five years in Division 3 playing under two different managers. It went financially bust again in 1990 but was nevertheless allowed to stay in Division 3. In 1991, Gourcuff returned to the club and after almost a decade playing in Division 3, Lorient earned promotion back to Division 2 after winning the second edition of the Championnat National.

Jean-Claude Darcheville scored the game-winning goal for Lorient in the 2002 Coupe de France final.

Lorient spent two seasons in the second division and, in the 1997–98 season, surprised many by running away with the league alongside champions Nancy. The 1998–99 season marked Lorient's first appearance in Division 1 in the club's history. The appearance was brief with Lorient struggling to meet the financial demands and stronger competition of the league. The club finished in 16th place and were relegated. Amazingly, Lorient finished equal on points with Le Havre with both clubs having the same amount of wins, losses, and draws. However, due to Le Havre having a better goal difference, Lorient was relegated. After only two seasons in Division 2, Lorient were back in the first division for the 2001–02 season. Prior to the promotion, in April 2001, a takeover of the club led by Alain Le Roch led to internal problems, which resulted in the departure of Gourcuff and one of the club's best players, Ulrich Le Pen, soon after. The club hired Argentine manager Ángel Marcos to replace Gourcuff. However, Marcos lasted only a few months.

Despite the initial issues, Lorient strengthened its squad in preparation for its return to the first division by recruiting players such as Pascal Delhommeau, Moussa Saïb, Johan Cavalli, and Pape Malick Diop. Led by Yvon Pouliquen, the new signings joined the likes of Jean-Claude Darcheville, Arnaud Le Lan, and Seydou Keita and surprised many by reaching the final of the Coupe de la Ligue. Lorient was defeated by Bordeaux in the final. Lorient continued its impressive cup form by winning the Coupe de France just two months later. In the match, Lorient faced Bastia and defeated the Corsicans 1–0 courtesy of a goal from Darcheville. The title was the club's first major honour. The celebration would however end on a sourer note as Lorient was relegated from league play in the same season.

Lorient returned to the first division, now called Ligue 1, in 2006 with a completely revamped team. Instead of spending money on players, the club focused its efforts on improving its academy and promoted several players to the first-team such as André-Pierre Gignac, Virgile Reset, Jérémy Morel, and Diego Yesso during the club's stint in Ligue 2. Lorient was also influenced by the arrival of the Malian international Bakari Koné. The club, in its return to Ligue 1, finished mid-table in three straight seasons. In the 2009–10 season, Lorient performed well domestically. In October 2009, the club reached 5th place in the table; its highest position that late in the season ever. Lorient eventually finished the campaign in 7th place; its best finish in Ligue 1.


Current squad[edit]

As of 18 October 2016.[2]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 France GK Anthony Lamonge
3 France DF Bradley Mazikou
4 France MF Mattéo Guendouzi
5 Senegal DF Zargo Touré
6 France DF François Bellugou
7 Democratic Republic of the Congo MF Arnold Mvuemba
8 Portugal MF Cafú
9 Ghana FW Abdul Majeed Waris
10 France MF Sylvain Marveaux
12 Cameroon FW Benjamin Moukandjo
13 France DF Michaël Ciani
14 France FW Jérémie Aliadière
15 France DF Mathieu Peybernes
16 France GK Paul Delecroix
17 Algeria MF Walid Mesloub
No. Position Player
18 France FW Alexis Claude-Maurice
19 France MF Romain Philippoteaux
20 France MF Steven Moreira
21 Guinea FW Mohamed Mara
22 France FW Benjamin Jeannot
23 Ghana MF Alhassan Wakaso
24 New Caledonia DF Wesley Lautoa
25 France DF Vincent Le Goff
26 Tunisia MF Issam Ben Khémis
27 France FW Jimmy Cabot
28 France MF Maxime Barthelmé
29 France DF Pape Paye
32 Guinea DF Ibrahima Conté
34 Ivory Coast DF Erwin Koffi
40 France GK Benjamin Lecomte (captain)

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
France DF Lindsay Rose (on loan to Bastia)
Gabon DF Yoann Wachter (on loan to Sedan)
France DF Faïz Selemani (on loan to Tours)
France MF Pierre Lavenant (on loan to Avranches)
No. Position Player
Gabon MF Denis Bouanga (on loan to Tours)
France FW Marvin Gakpa (on loan to Ajaccio)
France FW Valentin Lavigne (on loan to Brest)

Reserve squad[edit]

As of 18 October 2016.[3]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
France GK Maxime Pattier
Japan GK Louis Thébaut
France DF David Attah
France DF Maxence Bellego
France DF Rudy Ebondo
France DF Adrien Julloux
France DF Jocelyn Laurent
France DF Alexandre Lavenant
France DF Quentin Lecoeuche
France DF Aristote Lusinga
France DF Peter Ouaneh
France MF Kilian Bourglan
No. Position Player
France MF Maxime Etuin
France MF Matteo Guendouzi
France MF Jordan Henry
Cameroon MF Ephraim Yosanguim
France FW Alexis Claude-Maurice
France FW Alexis Ebrard
Ivory Coast FW Moussa Guel
France FW Pierre-Yves Hamel
France FW Lee Marving Kouakou
France FW Jean-Philippe Krasso
France FW Abdallah Yaisien

Notable players[edit]

Below are the notable former and current players who have represented Lorient in league and international competition since the club's foundation in 1926. To appear in the section below, a player must have played in at least 100 official matches for the club.

For a complete list of FC Lorient players with a Wikipedia article, see here.

Management and staff[edit]

Club officials[edit]

Senior club staff[4]
  • President: Loïc Féry
  • General Director: Arnaud Tanguy
  • Manager: Sylvain Ripoll
  • Assistant Manager: Franck Haise

Managerial history[edit]




  1. ^ Ben Lyttleton (8 August 2011). "PSG's Galactiques suffer 'cold shower' as Lorient rain on their parade". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 March 2012. 
  2. ^ "Les joueurs - Saison 2016/2017". fclweb.fr. Retrieved 18 October 2016. 
  3. ^ "Les joueurs - Saison 2016/2017". fclweb.fr. Retrieved 18 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "Présentation". FC Lorient. Retrieved 11 January 2011. 
  5. ^ "France – Trainers of First and Second Division Clubs". RSSSF. Retrieved 11 January 2011. 
  6. ^ "Entraîneurs". FC Lorient. Retrieved 11 January 2011. 
  7. ^ The 1995 title was won by the club's reserve team.

External links[edit]