|Full name||Stade Rennais|
|Nickname(s)||Les Rouges et Noirs|
(The Red and Blacks)
|Founded||10 March 1901; 115 years ago|
|2015–16||Ligue 1, 8th|
|Website||Club home page|
Stade Rennais Football Club (French pronunciation: [stɑd ʁɛ.nɛ]; commonly referred to as Stade Rennais, SRFC or simplyRennes) is a French association football club based in Rennes. The club was founded in 1901 and currently plays in Ligue 1, the top tier of French football. Rennes plays its home matches at the Roazhon Park, located within the city. The team is managed by Christian Gourcuff and captained by defender Pedro Mendes. The team's president is René Ruello and its owner is Artémis, the holding company of businessman François Pinault.
Rennes was founded in 1901 under the name Stade Rennais and is one of the founding members of the first division of French football. Alongside Nantes, Rennes is one of the top football clubs in the region and the two are among the main clubs that contest the Derby Breton. The club's best finish in the league has been fourth with the club accomplishing this feat on four occasions, most recently in 2006–07. Rennes has won two Coupe de France titles in 1965 and 1971. After winning the Coupe de France in 1971, Rennes changed its name to its current version.
Rennes is known for its youth academy, known in English as the Henri Guérin Training Centre, which was formed in 2000. The French Football Federation (FFF) has regularly recognised Rennes as having the best youth academy in the country; the club has finished in first place for the past two seasons. The patriarch of the academy is the under-19 team, which has won the Coupe Gambardella three times in 1973, 2003 and 2008. The academy has produced several notable talents, such as Sylvain Wiltord, Yoann Gourcuff, Yann M'Vila, Moussa Sow and Jimmy Briand, among others.
- 2.1Training centre
- 4.1Current squad
- 4.2Out on loan
- 4.3Notable players
- 5Management and coaching
- 5.1Managerial history
- 8External links
Main article: History of Stade Rennais F.C.
Stade Rennais in 1904.
Stade Rennais Football Club was founded on 10 March 1901 by a group of former students living in Brittany. Football had quickly become widely circulated in nearby regions and it was soon brought to Brittany. The club's first match was played two weeks later against FC Rennais, which Stade lost 6–0. In 1902, Stade Rennais joined the USFSA federation and, subsequently, became a founding member of the Ligue de Bretagne de football, a newly created regional league founded by the federation. In the second league season, the club won the competition after defeating the inaugural league winners FC Rennais 4–0 in the final. On 4 May 1904, Stade Rennais merged with its rivals FC Rennais to form Stade Rennais Université Club, with the primary objective being to overcome the recent domination of the Ligue de Bretagne by US Saint-Malo, then known as US Saint-Servan, which fielded mostly British players. The new club adopted the colours of Rennais, which consisted of a red and black combination with black vertical stripes on the shirt. After three years of Saint-Malo dominating the league, Rennes finally eclipsed the club in 1908 under the leadership of Welsh manager Arthur Griffith. In the following season, Rennes won the league again, but in 1910 Rennes was unable to win a third, as Saint-Malo won the league by two points. The champions subsequently went on an impressive run in which it won the league for the next four seasons over.
After World War I, Rennes began focusing its efforts on winning the recently created Coupe de France. Strengthened by the arrivals of internationals Bernard Lenoble, Maurice Gastiger, Ernest Molles and captain François Hugues after the war, in the competition's fourth campaign, Rennes reached the final. In the match, the club faced two-time defending champions Red Star Olympique, which was led by attacker Paul Nicolas, defender Lucien Gamblin and goalkeeper Pierre Chayriguès. Red Star opened the scoring in the fourth minute and the match was concluded following a late goal from Raymond Sentubéry. After the disorganisation of the USFSA in 1913, Rennes joined the Ligue de l'Ouest. In 1929, Rennes departed the league after disagreeing with the increased number of games the league sought to implement in the new season. The departure led to Rennes becoming a "free agent", and the club played numerous friendly matches to compensate the loss of league matches.
The presidency of Isidore Odorico marked the history of the club during the 1920-1930s.
In July 1930, the National Council of the French Football Federation (FFF) voted 128–20 in support of professionalism in French football. Under the leadership of club president Isidore Odorico, Rennes was among the first clubs to adopt the new statute and, subsequently, became professional and became founding members of the new league. In the league's inaugural season, Rennes finished mid-table in its group. Two years later, in 1935, the club reached the final of the Coupe de France for the second time. Rennes, however, lost to Marseille 3–0 after failing to overcome three first-half goals. The club's attack was also limited in the match due to being deprived of its top two attackers,Walter Kaiser and Walter Vollweiler, who were both injured. Rennes spent four more years in the first division before suffering relegation to Division 2 in the 1936–37 season. Rennes played in Division 2 before professionalism was abolished due to World War II. After the war, Rennes returned to Division 1. Led by the Austrian-born Frenchman Franz Pleyer, Rennes achieved its best finish in the league after finishing fourth in the 1948–49 campaign. Despite the domestic resurgence under Pleyer, the club struggled to maintain the consistency and, in the 1950s, rotated between the first division and the second division under the watch of the Spaniard Salvador Artigas and Henri Guérin, who acted in a player-coach role.
Under the leadership of new president Louis Girard, Rennes underwent a major upheaval, which included renovations to the stadium. Girard sought to make Rennes competitive nationally and the first objective was achieved when the club earned promotion back to Division 1 in 1958. After finishing in the bottom-half of the table for six-straight seasons, Rennes, now managed by former club player Jean Prouff, finished in fourth place in the 1964–65 season. In the same season, the club earned its first major honour after winning the Coupe de France. Rennes, led by players such as Daniel Rodighiéro, Georges Lamia and Jean-Claude Lavaud defeated UA Sedan-Torcy 3–1 in the replay ofthe final. The first leg of the match ended 2–2, which resulted in a replay. After the cup success, Rennes played in European competition for the first time in the 1965–66 season. The club, however, lost to Czechoslovakian club Dukla Prague in the first round.
Jean Prouff, pictured in 1935, led Rennes to its major successes.
In the ensuing years, Rennes struggled in league play but performed well in the Coupe de France, reaching the semi-finals on two occasions in 1967 and 1970. In 1971, Rennes captured its second Coupe de France title after defeating Lyon 1–0 with the only goal coming from a penalty conversion by André Guy. On 23 May 1972, Rennes officially changed its name to its current form. After another season in charge, Prouff departed Rennes and the club entered free-fall. From 1972 to 1994, Rennes was supervised by 11 different managers and, during the years, consistently hovered between Division 1 and Division 2. In 1978, the club was on the verge of bankruptcy and, as a result, was order by a tribunal to sell its biggest earners and enter a policy of austerity. In the 1980s, the city's municipality gained a majo