Thursday evening against Nevers, the US Carcassonne season ended in a cruel way in the Pro D2 play-off (24-12). It’s time for this group to say goodbye, after several seasons together. And maybe for Christian Labit to take a step back.
It’s often said that sport is all about the details, that in the big moments, that’s what makes the difference. And these details, they could just as easily have tipped in favor of Carcassonne, as on the side of Nevers. The “yellow and black” will often think back to this toe in touch from Maxime Marty just before flattening a sublime try, to this penalty from Samuel Marquesproche to find the middle of the poles, to this drop from Damien Anon who touches the post while the stadium had held its breath, at this test of Nevers on a stroke of luck…
For the first play-off in its history, USC went to nothing of a monumental feat, to seek a semi-final of the championship (24-12). But it is no longer the time to redo this match, Thursday evening was also the time to celebrate some players on the way out, as Samuel Marques points out: “We go out with our heads held high, we can be proud of what we have achieved, that’s what I told the players. I think we have given a good image to this club again. We have to celebrate guys who are leaving, who have been there for a while. We’re gonna stick together and enjoy it.”
Read also :
Pro D2: nothing smiled on US Carcassonne against Nevers in the play-off
“I’m not convinced that I’m going to stick with this philosophy again next season”
Last February, US Carcassonne announced the extension of Christian Labit for the next two seasons. But at the final whistle on Thursday evening, the former international third line dropped a bomb at the microphone of Canal + : “These are stories that come to an end. It’s an adventure that’s been going on for a few years now, I’m starting to get used to these situations and tired. So I’m not convinced that I’m going to stay with this philosophy for a long time. next season.” The USC manager went one better: “We expect a lot from the outside, and it’s very hard, our daily life is complicated. The group for next season is almost done, we have a quality staff. I’m not a problem for the club, I I’m only the one who tries to bring a project and I’m lucky that men follow me. So I don’t know if it’s a scoop, what is certain is that I leave myself time to think and to know what my future will be like.”
If we have known for several weeks that many players will leave Aude in the offseason, no one expected Christian Labit to think of a departure. So will go, won’t go? Will he take a step back and then come back? Nothing is less certain and we will have to wait to find out what the future of the former Stade Toulousain player will be like.
One thing is certain, a beautiful page is turning for Carcassonne, a page that will have led the “yellow and black” club to the top of the Pro D2 table. The workforce will no longer be the same when it resumes this summer and the center Guillaume Martocq, who returns to Bayonne, would have liked to experience another outcome: “A lot of us leave the club, it’s obviously frustrating to end like this. But I think we have to look at what we’ve achieved this season.”
The USC transfer point
On the departure side: right props Aurélien Azar (Castres), Julien Facundo (retired), left prop Andrei Ursache (retired), hooker Maxime Castant (Bourgoin-Jallieu), second line Christiaan van der Merwe (Nevers), third lines Clément Doumenc (Montpellier), Pierre Huguet (Bayonne), Louis-Mathieu Jazeix (Suresnes), opener Johnny Mcphilipps (Provence Rugby), centers Guillaume Martocq (back from loan Bayonne), Emmanuel Vaitulukina (back from loan Perpignan), Henry Tuilagi (return from Perpignan loan), wingers Sione Tui (return from Stade Français loan), Benoît Lazzarotto (retirement).
On the arrivals side: the left pillar Jules Martinez (Narbonne), the right pillars Soso Bekoshvili (Brive), Vakhtangi Akhobadze (Biarritz), third lines Étienne Herjean (Oyonnax), Stéphane Onambélé (Castres), Grégory Annetta (Provence Rugby), scrum-half Pierre Pagès (Vannes), fly-half Christopher Hilsenbeck (Vannes), center Pierre Aguillon ( Castres) and three-quarter Clément Clavières (Castres).