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Garde looks to next generation

Lyon coach Remi Garde says he hopes the young players in Ligue 1 will fill the gaps left by the exodus of quality players abroad.

A host of players have left France in recent seasons to join English Premier League clubs.

Newcastle United has led the way and they have further added to their French contingent this month with the signing of Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa from Montpellier.

Garde himself went to Arsenal in 1996, but he said the latest spate of departures may not be all bad news for Ligue 1.

“It’s a bit strange. I took the opportunity to play abroad after the Bosman ruling in 1996. Back in that time, it was not an exodus,” he said.

“Today, there are a lot of players leaving France. On the bright side, maybe, it’s a good opportunity for young players to play or to reorganise the club finances. Every French club is now in an austerity period, also because of the taxation which is different than in the other countries.

“But it’s a little bit bizarre to suddenly have so many French players at Newcastle. But that’s how it is.”

Garde’s side have the chance to return to the top of the table when they travel to Valenciennes on Friday.

Wed 23 January, 2013
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