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Bob Bradley’s Le Havre suffers setback in French promotion race

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The French Ligue 2 season is coming to a close, and Bob Bradley’s Le Havre AC is running out of time to secure promotion to Ligue 1.

Le Havre fell even further away from the Ligue 2 promotion places after this weekend’s results. Bob Bradley’s squad settled for a 1-1 tie with relegation-threatened Evian on the road at the Parc des Sports Annecy.

The team Le Havre is chasing for the third and final promotion place, FC Metz, defeated Red Star, 2-0, on Friday, meaning Bradley’s team is now three points behind FC Metz with three matches remaining. FC Metz also holds a five-goal edge on Le Havre in the goal difference department.

Things could have been even worse for Le Havre, but two teams it was tied with heading into the weekend — Lens and Red Star — both suffered losses, as did Clermont Foot, which is just two points behind Le Havre.

Despite the hurdles Le Havre must overcome in order to earn one of the league’s three promotion spots, the former U.S. Men’s National Team head coach thinks his side can do it.

“No chance that we consider (promotion) is out of reach,” Bradley said following his club’s tie on Friday. “We have nine points to play for. Games at the end of the year for everyone are difficult. You have different teams fighting for different things, and so we took a point, we wanted three, but it keeps us in the fight.”

Bradley’s confidence likely stems in part from the fact Metz’s next match is against Ligue 2 leader Dijon FCO, which has secured promotion to Ligue 1, but is still fighting for the Ligue 2 title.

Here is a look at the top of the Ligue 2 table and the remaining schedules for the clubs in the running for the third and final promotion spot:

Ligue 2 standings

1. Dijon FCO (67 points | 19-6-10 | 58 Goals For | 29 Goals Against)
2. Nancy (65 points | 18-5-11 | 53 Goals For | 29 Goals Against)
3. Metz (59 points | 17-10-8 | 48 Goals For | 37 Goals Against)
4. Le Havre AC (56 points | 16-8-11 | 41 Goals For | 35 Goals Against)
5. Lens (55 points | 14-8-13 | 37 Goals For | 32 Goals Against)
6. Red Star (55 points | 15-10-10 | 35 Goals For | 34 Goals Against)
7. Clermont Foot (54 points | 15-11-9 | 53 Goals For | 50 Goals Against)
8. Auxerre (51 points | 14-12-9 | 43 Goals For | 41 Goals Against)

Team schedules

METZ

April 30 – at Dijon FCO
May 6 – vs. Tours FC
May 13 – at Lens

LE HAVRE AC

Friday – vs. Nimes
May 6 – at Auxerre
May 13 – vs. FC Bourg-Peronnas

LENS

Friday – vs. Paris
May 6 – at FC Bourg-Peronnas
May 13 – vs. Metz

RED STAR

Friday – vs. FC Bourg-Peronnas
May 6 – vs. Dijon FCO
May 13 – at Creteil

CLERMONT FOOT

Friday – at Stade Laval
May 6 – vs. Brest
May 13 – at Sochaux

AUXERRE

Friday – at Sochaux
May 6 – vs. Le Havre
May 13 – at Brest

Comments

  1. To split the difference between the “Boo who cares about the French second division?” and the “we want to hear what an American coach is doing” crowd could Le Havre’s results just be included in Americans Abroad?

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  2. I still think he should’ve stayed with Stabaek another year, just to see how they did together in the Europa League. What’s done is done, though, so I hope he gets promoted.

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    • The clubs sold off two or three of its top players which was always the plan. Their prospects in the Europa league were next to impossible to even make the group stage.

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  3. All two of the people on SBI routinely complaining about Le Harve not being mentioned appear to have jinxed Bob Bradley and his club.

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    • By all means, let’s have more Cosmos coverage! I mean, who cares about Americans making inroads in foreign leagues, am I right…?

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    • If you’re going to be a troll, at least find a way to correctly spell the name of Bradley’s club. It’s not that hard.

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      • No trolling but my level of care to spell the club name correctly is on par with trying to spell an NASL club name correctly.

        It’s pretty irrelevant outside Bob Bradley’s addition and will go back to being irrelevant once he leaves of the club misses promotion.

  4. Metz plays Dihon next. This is in le havers favor for sure. But still may not be enough.
    Thanks for the article. Next season please update us from the START of the season.

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    • Its nice that they update us on players because there is 30+ guys to try to follow. If you want to follow Bob or Wagner at Huddersfield its pretty easy to do on your own. I don’t think frequent updates are really necessary. Maybe just add the links to Bob’s comments in the Monday ticker or something.

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      • JRaz: Respectfully disagree. There is a greater story here. Not many American coaches have been in this position. And though I have been going elsewhere for bits of info on this story for months now I want more than what your suggesting. Hence my comments. Details aren’t enough. I think its worth a feature on multiple levels: one of our most winningest gaffers, the history of Le Havre (which I’m sure is lost on most in the USA), the response of his squad to him, the response of Le Havre fans to him, coaching in Europe, his growth and arc as a manager. And much more. My point is, again, a regular feature, well researched and written, would go someplace this site doesn’t often go. It would fill a void. Cheers.

    • Hilarious that this is the first comment, because the comments section in all of the other posts complain about how SBI hadn’t mentioned this at all.

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      • Let’s be honest he couldn’t get Egypt to the WC yes I know revolution, counter revolution, no domestic league, but still his group stage was full of minnows and they got blown out in the first leg of the home and away, he finished third in the 23-26th best league in Europe and he has Le Havre in the same spot as when he took over. Let’s be honest if Wondo doesn’t shank the one against Belgium no one would care what Bob was doing.

        Bob should be credited with working tirelessly to reach his dream of managing in the Champions League for a top club, and his success will help other Americans get a shot someday, but he has been above average, but not great in all his stops. I hope his side gets promoted.

      • Johnnyrazor wrote “Let’s be honest if Wondo doesn’t shank the one against Belgium no one would care what Bob was doing.”

        Ridiculous statement. People caring about Bob’s performance abroad has nothing to do with how the USMNT is doing. He is a pioneer for U.S. coaches and his work with Egypt, Stabaek, and Le Havre is remarkable.

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