Meyer vows to trans­form strug­gling Stade Fran­cais

Kuwait Times - - Sports -

PARIS: South African Heyneke Meyer vowed to turn rel­e­ga­tion haunted Stade Fran­cais into “the best team in the world” at his un­veil­ing in Paris yes­ter­day. The for­mer Spring­bok coach will take over the reins next sea­son-when Stade will be hop­ing to still be play­ing in the Top 14. Champions in 2015, the Parisians have fallen on hard times and are in­volved in a rel­e­ga­tion bat­tle along­side min­nows Oy­on­nax, Brive and Agen.

But Meyer still be­lieves that under Swiss mil­lion­naire owner Hans-Peter Wild, the club can bounce back to past glo­ries. “I never make prom­ises that I can’t keep-I like to under-prom­ise and over-de­liver,” said Meyer. “When I had a meet­ing with Doc­tor Wild I said to him I don’t want to go into rugby or a team if I can’t have the same vi­sion to build the best team in the world.” Wild, though, wasn’t so guarded about his am­bi­tions.

“In three years we’ll be champions, per­haps it’s go­ing to take four,” said the Ger­man-born busi­ness­man. A 44-3 thrash­ing by Lyon at the week­end left Stade four points above the rel­e­ga­tion places with two matches to play.

But they are be­ing hunted down by an Oy­on­nax side that has won five of their last seven matches, while next week’s visit of rock-bot­tom Brive could prove de­ci­sive. Meyer in­sisted that even rel­e­ga­tion at the end of this sea­son would not de­rail his am­bi­tions. — AFP

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