Doing it “Nantes Style” – Part 1

It’s been a long time since I’ve written anything related to Football Manager. Mainly due to time constraints, I have been focused on video content on my YouTube channel (find it HERE). But due to the schedule of recording and playing, sometimes I can’t play on with my YouTube save. As such, I’ve been searching for a fun “side save” that could actually keep me interested. I kicked around a few countries during my current travels through Germany (in real life) and none of them really stuck until I met a certain Breton club in France.


FC Nantes is one of the most successful clubs in French football history, especially during their great years in the 1960’s and 1970’s. During this time they became known for their attractive and fluid style of attacking football known as “jeu à la nantaise” under Basque manager José Arribas.


This style of very “modern” football was continued under subsequent managers like Jean-Claude Suaudeau and Raynald Denoueix, who also won further silverware in the 1980’s, ‘90’s and as recent as 2001.


Beyond this style of play, Nantes were also known for their academy. French internationals such as Marcel Desailly, Didier Deschamps, Christian Karembeu, Claude Makélélé, and Jérémy Toulalan began their careers with Les Canaris (The Canaries).

Soccer - Didier Deschamps

Unfortunately, FC Nantes have fallen behind the pack since the 2001 league title, even spending time in Ligue 2. This long period of mediocrity has led to Nantes losing its footballing identity and no longer being such a prodigious producer of talent.

My “goals” for this save are quite simple:

  1. Bring back the “jeu à la nantaise” style/philosophy. I won’t be recreating exact tactics or formations from the past, but rather focus on the philosophy of fluid, attractive and attacking football.
  2. Reestablish the academy as one of the best in France and all of Europe, bringing through talents into the senior team. I also want to have academy players earn French senior team caps, ideally (though not necessarily) while at Nantes.
  3. Historically, Nantes also featured many great Argentinian players (e.g. 1986 World Cup winners Jorge Burruchaga and Julio Olarticoechea). As such, I will also reopen the path of bringing Argentinian footballers to Brittany.
  4. Win all three domestic competitions like they had done in the past; Ligue 1 (1965, 1966, 1973, 1977, 1980, 1983, 1995, 2001), Coupe de France (1979, 1999, 2000), and Coupe de la Ligue (1965)
  5. Have strong European cup runs, since Nantes reached the semi-finals of both the Cup Winners’ Cup (1980) and Champions League (1996).

I don’t foresee me being able to produce weekly or scheduled updates on this save, but rather update progress via Twitter and give pertinent website updates as they relate to the goals mentioned above. Beyond everything, I want to have fun with this save. I love bringing back “fallen giants” (as in my YouTube series with Hamburg), and FC Nantes certainly fits that description.

I hope you will enjoy this journey as well. The next update will certainly highlight the tactical approach and some young talents already present at the club.

Au revoir mes amis.

2 thoughts on “Doing it “Nantes Style” – Part 1

Add yours

  1. Great choice. I managed them in FM08, before their fall to Ligue 2, and we won a couple of domestic titles and one Champions League. They are a really interesting middle ranking club in French football, without the resources of Marseilles or Lyon or even Bordeaux, not to mention PSG. And with lots of Breton competition from Rennes and Guingamp and others. But, as you’ve found, a great history. Good luck!

    By the way, really enjoying the Hamburg Revolution. Love the mix of game play and guides.

    Liked by 1 person

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