Bordeaux manager Jean-Louis Gasset has explained his reason for handing Samuel Kalu a starting berth in the the club’s 1-0 away win against Stade Rennes on Friday.
Kalu has been sidelined since picking up an injury while on international duty with Nigeria last month.
The 23-year-old featured for 60 minutes in Les Girondis’ hard-fought win at Roazhon Park.
The winger teed up Frenchman Hatem Ben Arfa for the winning goal in the first half.
“I said Kalu wouldn’t start but in the back of my mind, he was still a player who energizes,” Gasset said after the game.
“So if you have Kalu going on one side and Ben Arfa going through the other, you still have two players that the other teams need to be careful about. These are our strengths. I chose to make it start.
” He ended with a little of injury because I had given him an hour. I hope it’s not too serious […] When we met three days before the match, I found him tired. I said we wouldn’t take any chances.
“And after a day of rest and the last session at Haillan, where he had recovered well and where he was very leggy. I said that we had to do as with Hatem, that is to say, start him and play him for 60 minutes. I hope the little stiffness he felt.”