Mercato Round Up

Rennes badg

Mercato Round Up

With the summer transfer window now closed, we summarise the comings and goings at le Stade de la Route de Lorient.


New signings

Olivier Sorin

Age: 33

Position: Goalkeeper

Previous Club: AJ Auxerre

Bought For: Free

Quote: “It’s an interesting challenge.  I have already experienced Ligue 1 in the past.  I know Paul George Ntep, Axel Ngando and Zana Allee with whom I played with at Auxerre last season.  I want to meet all the objectives that the coach will set the group.” – Olivier Sorin

Benjamin Andre

Age: 24

Position: Defender

Previous Club: AC Ajaccio

Bought For: Free

Quote: “I already followed him when I was at Boulogne.  He started playing in Ligue 1 with Ajaccio very young.  All observers of football will tell you that he is a very good player. He is versatile.  I’m going to play him at right back because I think he really has great potential.  I think he has all the characteristics to emerge as right back.  There will be competition with Romain Danze. It is essential to have two players for each position. We found this out late last season with the departure of Emerson.” – Philippe Montanier

Fallou Diagne

Age: 25

Position: Defender

Previous Club: Freiburg (Germany)

Bought For: €1.50m

Quote: “Stade Rennais is a recognised club.  When I was asked to come, I did not hesitate.  Many Senegalese have played for the club such as Kader Mangane and Moussa Sow.  They had some great seasons here.  I spoke with Gelson (Fernandes).  His first impressions of the club are good.  I have to prove myself because I have not played in Ligue 1.” – Fallou Diagne

Edson Mexer 

Age: 25

Position: Defender

Previous Club: Nacional (Portugal)

Bought For: €2.20m

Quote: “I am excited to join Stade Rennais.  It’s a dream for me to play in Ligue 1.  I hope to defend the colors of the club with the greatest of success.” – Edson Mexer

Gjoko Zajkov

Age: 19

Position: Defender

Previous Club: Rabotnicki Skopje (Macedonia)

Bought For: Free

Quote: “It’s hard to find new central defenders at a very high level.  He is a young defender who is already playing for Macedonia.  He is very good technically and in the tackle.  He is a modern central defender.  We are happy to have him with us because a lot of big clubs were interested in him.  He was attracted to our project.  Stade Rennais FC is a good intermediate club that knows how to integrate youth.  These parameters led him to join us.” – Philippe Montanier

Gelson Fernandes

Age: 28

Position: Midfielder

Previous Club: Freiburg (Germany)

Bought For: €1.60m

Quote: “I’m glad I’ve now joined.  It was my choice to join Stade Rennais.  It’s a challenge that is exciting and I am ready for the challenge.  There is a very good team that is far from having exploited its potential.  I was also attracted by the club facilities.” – Gelson Fernandes

Christian Bruls

Age: 25

Position: Midfielder

Previous Club: KAA Gent

Bought For: €2.20m

Quote: “We followed Christian for a long time.  In particular, we already started discussions last spring.  He is a player that is technically very comfortable and also has a lot of heart.  He is also able to take set pieces. Last season in Nice, he was very consistent in his performance.” – Philippe Montanier

Sanjin Prcic

Age: 20

Position: Midfielder

Previous Club: FC Sochaux Montbeliard

Bought For: €1.00m

Quote: “I am very pleased to sign for the club.  Everyone has welcomed me very well.  This is the beginning of a new phase for me.  Here, all the conditions are met to advance and enrich me.  Stade Rennais has always been a very good club.  It is capable of playing in Europe.  I do not know them personally but I know there are experienced players who are able to guide the younger ones.” – Sanjin Prcic

Pedro Henrique

Age: 24

Position: Midfielder

Previous Club: FC Zurich (Switzerland)

Bought For: €1.00m

Quote: “Shabani Nonda, who played for Zurich and Stade Rennais has said positive things about the club.  I also know that there have been several Brazilians to play here.  I have heard from many that Alexander Frei had great success at the club.  I saw the match against Paris Saint-Germain and I was impressed with the level of the game.  Even though I know Stade Rennais had a difficult last season, there is a good potential.  My first goal is to get to know my new teammates and make my way into the team.  I want to progress at Stade Rennais and try to help the club to have a good season.” – Pedro Henrique

Habib Habibou

Age: 27

Position: Forward

Previous Club: KAA Gent

Bought For: €2.00m

Quote: “He is able to play up front or on the wing.  He has power and speed.  He also has a lot of experience.  He does not come to replace Ola Toivonen as he is versatile and they can play together.  These are tough positions.” – Philippe Montanier

Philipp Hosiner

Age: 25

Position: Forward

Previous Club: Austria Vienne (Austria)

Bought For: €1.90m

Quote: “He is a striker who scores goals.  He is very generous and combative in harrassing the defenders.  He is a pure centre forward.  It’s hard to appreciate the difficulty of the Austrian championship.  But when you see how he played in the match against Zenit St Petersburg in the Champions League, he was at an international level.” – Philippe Montanier



Tiemoue Bakayoko – sold to AS Monaco for €8.00m

Romain Alessandrini – sold to Olympique de Marseille for €5.00m

Jonathan Pitroipa – sold to Al-Jazira for €3.00m

Dimitri Foulquier – sold to Granada for €2.80m

Julien Feret – released (SM Caen)

John Boye – released (Kayserispor)

Cheikh N’Diaye – released

Abdoulaye Diallo – loaned to Le Havre

Sadio Diallo – loaned to Lorient

Cheick Fantamady Diarra – loaned to AJ Auxerre

Cedric Hountondji – loaned to Chateauroux

Wesley Said – loaned to Laval

Pictures courtesy of and


News and Updates – 27 August 2014

News and Updates – 27 August 2014.

Transfer News

The club has completed the signing of Senegalese centre back Fallou Diagne from German club Freiburg.  The 25 year old has joined les Rouges et Noirs on a three year deal.  He will wear the number 14 shirt with “Fallou” on the back.  Diagne played for the Bundesliga team for two seasons and enhanced his reputation with scouts from teams such as Schalke taking a look at him.  He has experience of playing in France having spent over three seasons with Metz in Ligue 2.  He will join up with his former Freiburg teammate Gelson Fernandes.

Diagne: “Rennes are a recognized club.  When I was asked to join, I did not hesitate.  Many Senegalese players have played in Rennes such as Kader Mangane and Moussa Sow.  They had some great seasons here.  I spoke with Gelson, his first impressions of the club are good.  I have to prove myself because I have not played in Ligue 1.”

Philippe Montanier: “In the centre of defence, we have two experienced players with Mexer and Sylvain Armand and two younger players with Cedric Hountondji and Gjoko Zajkov, but we wanted an extra player.  He has been followed for many years by the club.  He is a French player with good athleticism.  Gelson Fernandes told us about him before he arrived.  He gave us good information about the man and the player.”

The arrival of Diagne, as the clubs tenth signing this summer, could now lead to a number of the younger players being sent out on loan to Ligue 2 teams for game time and experience.  These players could include Zana Allee, Adrian Hunou and Wesley Said.  Hunou has been linked with a move to Ajaccio, Laval and Clermont.

One youngster who has gone out on loan already is Cedric Hountondji who has joined Ligue 2 side Chateauroux on a season long loan.  The loan deal contains no option for purchase for Chateauroux so that should mean Hountondji will come back to les Rouges et Noirs will a full season of Ligue 2 football under his belt.  A good deal all round.

Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik, who has been relegated to the reserves the last few weeks, could finally be on his way out of the club.  He had previously been discussing a move to Italian club Palermo.  In the last few days though these talks have stalled.  L’Equipe now report that discussions have begun with English side West Ham United.

France Football have claimed that the club are looking to open talks with Yoann Gourcuff about as possible move back to Stade Rennais.  His wages and injury record may prove a stumbling block however.

Montanier told Ouest France that recruitment is “95% complete” but he still remains on the lookout for potential deals before the close of the transfer window.

Ouest France also report that Jean Makoun is hopeful of successful negotiations with another Gulf based club after talks broke down with UAE club Al-Fujairah.

Squad News

Kamil Grosicki has returned to training with the first team whilst Benjamin Andre and Axel Ngando trained separately.

Sega Coulibaly has been called up to the French U19 team for a mini-tournament in Serbia in early September.  They will play matches against the host nation and Ukraine.

Benoit Costil has picked up his award for best Ligue 1 goalkeeper for the 2013-14 season as voted for by France Football.  A well deserved winner!


In a rare interview, club owner Francois Pinault, has spoken with French newspaper Ouest France whereby he discussed his commitment to the club and his thoughts on financial investment.

“Every time one of my managers asked me for money, he got it.  It was perhaps not the best solution.  There is a new cycle, which begins with a management team that knows the business.  The money is not enough. We still need to learn other things. To finally take that step.  Creating a “bling-bling” team does not interest me.  This does not correspond to the UK.  I prefer solid guys on the field.”

Pinault, who has experienced more disappointment than joy with Rennes, also tells Ouest-France how he was in New York during the last Coupe de France final, where the club lost to Guingamp (0-2) again in May 2014, “we were on the 41st floor of a building and I was convinced we were going to finally win it.  We could not lose two finals in a row against the same opponent.  Fortunately the windows do not open in the towers …” joked the businessman.