Choose between fasting and football- Nantes coach to Muslim players

April 4, 2023

Vitor MACHADO FERREIRA (Vitinha) of PSG and Jaouen HADJAM of Nantes during the French championship Ligue 1 football match between Paris Saint-Germain and FC Nantes on March 4, 2023 at Parc des Princes stadium in Paris, France - Photo Matthieu Mirville / DPPI (Photo by Matthieu Mirville / Matthieu Mirville / DPPI via AFP)

Antoine Kombouare the coach of Ligue 1 side Nantes has made it clear to all his players especially the Muslims who are fasting that it’s either football or the fasting.

This was after Algerian defender Jaouen Hadjam was dropped from the matchday squad against Reims.

According to Kombouare, the results of the team have to come before anything else.

He therefore set the rules clearly and nothing seems like will make him back down from them.

Jaouen Hadjam refused to break his fast and the coach decided to drop him.

Apparently his argument is that players who are fasting won’t be able to compete at the highest level required to win games.

Apparently in all the teams he’s coached, this has always been Kombouare’s principles.

“I met with all my Muslim players. We talked. We work to make everything go well, and we often succeed. But on the weekend, the players must be at the very top of their physical condition to make the team and to help the club win.”

Even during his time at PSG between 2002-2011, Kombouare didn’t entertain fasting players.

Well this has led to divided opinion on social media.

Some have supported the Frenchman while others have criticized him for this behavior.

Meanwhile Nantes lost that game 3-0 to Reims at home.