Anthony Belleau: "A crucial game for both sides"
The Toulon fly-half, who made his début with the France team a few days ago, attended the pre-game press conference ahead of Toulon vs. Lyon, on Wednesday, November 29th.
Anthony, how does it feel to come back after playing for France?
I’m back in Toulon to meet up with my team-mates and get down to Top 14 games again. Of course, the results with France were disappointing, but I learnt much and I’ll use this experience in the future. I was able to play high-level games and that’s the main positive element. We had disappointing results, but we have to go through this bad patch and try to improve things in the next games.
Both Lyon and Toulon have suffered three defeats in a row. What kind of a game will it be, then, according to you?
It’s going to be a hard fight. The Lyon players who are coming to Toulon know the city, the stadium, and what people expect from such a game. According to me, the struggle will be an intense one and we know what to expect. It’s a crucial game for both sides.
Were you surprised by the way have Lyon played this season, so far?
No, I wasn’t actually surprised, as I know several of their players and Pierre Mignoni [the Lyon coach, a former Toulon player]. So, I’m not that surprised. They have performed well from the start of the season, they’ve shown consistency, so, they have always been in the top spots. As I know the team and the staff, this doesn’t come as a surprise. They are very committed, they have a simple and efficient way of playing and some of their backline players can be a real difference-maker. Some of their younger players are ambitious and show they can be part of the first team. In the end, their group is quite homogeneous.
Losing at the Stade Mayol for a second time wouldn’t be acceptable…
Already, losing one game at home was not acceptable – a second one even less so. There are many games left and it’s such a long season that there will be ups and downs, so, we mustn’t get carried away. Over an entire season, things are going well and, sometimes, things are more difficult. But it’s a very long season. The test matches have just ended, there are many things to take into account, so, we mustn’t get carried away. We must stick together as we do at the moment and such an attitude will enable us to succeed.